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A trip into science

posted: Wed, Dec 7th, 2016

Sixth-graders recently learned that science is all around them – even if that science doesn't include wi-fi or cell service. The students visited the YMCA camp on Fairview Lake in Stillwater for a full-day excursion of nature walks, hiking, and team-building activities.

High up in the Appalachian Mountains, examples were on display everywhere of physical and chemical changes that take place on Earth and that are part of the sixth grade science curriculum. These included erosion, weathering, the formation of different types of rock, continental collisions that created the mountains, and the glacial erosion and melting that formed Fairview Lake itself.

"Being outdoors in the mountains like this is a new experience for a lot of them," said science teacher Shannon Carlson. "They learned how things are changing all around them and they don't even realize it." 

Students on different teams visited on different days with three trips run in total. For much of the day, the students were broken into smaller groups that did separate activities. Each group was guided by a YMCA counselor.

Among the highlights for the kids were the two-mile hike up a mountain where they could see three different states and the team-building activities such as navigating a maze while blindfolded. The students even got a chance to journey out into the middle of the lake in a flat-bottom boat for some hands-on science. They measured the water's temperature, depth, and turbidity.

"The kids loved the trip," said science teacher Pam Gebizlioglu.  "For most of them, it was their first time spending all day outside in nature like this. It was a great mix of fun and learning."

This is about the 12th year that MOMS sixth-graders have been going on trips to the camp.

Mount Olive Middle School
160 Wolfe Road Budd Lake, NJ 07828
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Phone: 973.691.4006 Fax: 973.691.4029

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