Learning made fun at Summer STEM Camp

David Sowders/Arizona Silver Belt Clayton Bylon, from the University of Arizona’s Project WET, gives STEM Camp attendee Kyle Petty some pointers at the groundwater demonstration.

Last Thursday about 50 fifth-ninth grade students from throughout Gila County had a chance to see working robots, learn hands-on how storms affect watersheds, go rock hunting and more during Summer STEM Camp at the fairgrounds, sponsored by the County School Superintendent’s Office.

In small groups, the campers enjoyed an array of 30-minute STEM-related (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) demonstrations and activities ranging from a lesson on fluorescent rocks by the Gila County Gem and Mineral Society, followed by an outdoor rock hunt, to a look inside computers hosted by Jeffrey Baer of the Superintendent’s Office.

At other tables, students learned from the Palo Verde Generating Station and APS how electricity is generated and how it reaches communities; checked out working robots brought by the Globe Unified School District Midnight Cicadas Robotics Club and built their own small robot; and learned about groundwater from the University of Arizona’s
Project WET. Using water-filled spray bottles and a jar of sprinkles in a demonstration by the Cobre Valley Watershed Partnership, campers saw how rainstorms can affect
a watershed.

Other vendors included Freeport McMoRan, Gila County Library District, Miami Memorial Library and Cobre Valley Regional Medical Center. United Fund of Globe-Miami contributed funding for Summer STEM Camp, and radio stations KQSS and KJAA donated computers.

“We want to thank United Fund, the stations and all of our vendors for helping make this a success,” said Nick Montague, chief deputy with the School Superintendent’s Office.

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