FRAMINGHAM – Middle school students exercised their knowledge alongside their imaginations while participating in the STEM Summer Camp at Framingham High School from July 17-28.
The STEM camp, run by Framingham State University, had 40 students, mostly rising 7th and 8th graders, although there were a few rising sixth graders too.
STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math.
The theme of the camp was “The life of a star.”
Over a 2-week period, students were learning and practicing their skills in these four disciplines, as they worked on different projects. On July 28, the students presented their final project to staff and parents at Framingham State University.
Students attended field trips to the Challenger Learning Center at the Christa McAuliffe Center, the new planetarium at Framingham State , and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.
According to William Jantzen, one of the directors of the camp, the students were extremely excited about what they are learning.
The kids were very involved in their projects and that the best part was when they “were into science but [didn’t] know it [was] science,” he said.
Jantzen said science and learning can be particularly exciting for kids when it lets them learn in a hands-on way that doesn’t feel like work to them.
Students had a multi-part final presentation. First, editing pictures of constellations/nebulas/galaxies that they ordered from Harvard, and then putting together another component that related to stars (a model telescope, a model nebula, etc.)
One seventh and one eighth grade student were constructing a model nebula from cotton balls and were using wooden sticks to essentially turn it into a mobile.
Photos provided by William Jantzen