STEM Facilitator Eugenia Ruiz writes about our Funston Sisters4Science working with circuit boards!
Good day! Sisters4Science at Funston Elementary School was so excited to have a visiting STEM professional at program session on November 4th. This week, our STEM Professional was Dr. Michelle Harris. She is a postdoctoral researcher at Northwestern University with a PhD in Chemistry. We were thrilled to have her back this year, she is well-know by the girls and very much loved for her exciting and interactive activities that she has brought us in the past! Each time she visited, she brought in a brand new activity centering around her work with solar panels and the chemistry behind them that she focuses in her professional research.
For this particular session, she brought in a circuit board that the girls could create and discussed with them how she works with circuit boards in her research with creating efficient solar panels. It had several different wires, a little motor, and the board itself. The girls got into three different groups, each with their own supplies to build and complete the circuit to get the motor actually working. To help them identify new and different symbols when working with the circuits, she provided them with a picture-filled worksheet and worked through it with the girls! They made some good guesses and finally learned what the symbol for the motor, conductor, switch, and resistor looked like when mapping a circuit on paper.
The girls had an absolute blast. Although it was a bit difficult at first to figure out how to put the pieces together, Dr. Harris was amazing and helped the girls out with ease. The girls loved working with a puzzle-like activity. It got them thinking critically but in a fun and active way with their circuit. It was great having Dr. Harris work with the girls once again. The girls and I look forward to her next visit! Until next time! Keep investigating!