High school science students study motion

Judge JoDee Hess takes a critical look at the Physics team’s balloon.

Trains, needles and chemicals were just a few of the substances used to pop balloons during a Terry High School science competition. Five teams competed in demonstrating a 25-step Rube Goldberg Experiment, where students fashioned a series of transfer of energy occurrences.

Each team spent weeks designing an apparatus similar to the Hasbro Mouse Trap game, where a transfer of energy occurred 25 times with a balloon-popping finale.  At least, that was what was supposed to happen. As middle grade students looked on, the high school science teams became keenly familiar with how difficult it is to complete a faultless science project.  
“They definitely got a lot out of it,” science teacher Greg Mendenhall said. “With human intervention everyone popped the balloon.”
This is the second year Mendenhall has hosted the in-school science competition. He hopes to make it an annual event with the ultimate goal of teaching students how to apply the science they’re learning from textbooks to real life.  
A panel of five judges critiqued the projects, evaluating each team’s project appearance, originality, theme and the ‘wow factor’ among other considerations.
The physics class, made up of juniors and seniors, placed first, while advanced biology students placed second. Physics team members included D.J. Hubbert, Nathan Lassle, Lindsay Stickel, Talon Mack, Ashley Morast and Trevor Pisk. The advanced biology class included Paul Eayrs, Tyler Forcella, Sergey Fredrickson, Layne Lantis, DuWayne Springer, McKensie Keller, Weston Luedtke and Ashley Morast.
Published Nov. 30, 2011
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