Left Photo: The 7th grade Mupu School students, made up of Ricardo Saldana, Dylan Johnson and Amber Morales, placed second in their grade group at the STEM Expo, part of the Ventura County Science Fair. Right Photo:The Mupu School 8th graders, Edith Ibarra, Steven Carrillo and Jasmine Arballo, received an Honorable Mention award.

Mupu students do well at
Ventura County Science Fair

March 28, 2014
Santa Paula News

By Brian D. Wilson Santa Paula Times Mupu School sent several 7th and 8th grade students to compete at this year’s Ventura County Science Fair at the Ventura County Fairgrounds and they placed in their category.

This was their first time competing in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) portion of the event. Each group designed and built wind turbines. The 7th grade students, made up of Ricardo Saldana, Dylan Johnson and Amber Morales, placed second in their grade group. The 8th graders, Edith Ibarra, Steven Carrillo and Jasmine Arballo, received the Honorable Mention award. The 8th grade kids said it took a lot of planning. They tried five different designs before settling on the final one.

Ricardo said he was surprised at the difficulty of the project. All of the students said they enjoyed the competition. Megan Olsen, who teaches 5th through 8th grade science at Mupu, said she got a call from the coordinator of the Kid Wind Expo, as the turbine competition was called, inviting her students to take part. “I went to the training and got the kits for the kids,” she said. “The kids were very excited.” She  added that they worked on their turbine designs after school Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

The students were mentored by Walter Gamboa, who worked with Isbell Middle School children last year. He is a friend of Mupu Principal Sheryl Barnd, who said she was excited to have the kids there. Gamboa said science is a hobby of his. He’s a surveyor with Cal Trans. “If not a surveyor, I might have been a teacher,” he added. “I enjoy working with kids.”

California State University Channel Islands sponsored the 5th Annual STEM Exposition in conjunction with the Science Fair.

Thousands of Ventura County student’s, in grades 6-12, complete science research projects at their schools, about 1,000 of those students earn the right to compete at the Ventura County Science Fair. Approximately 75 of the top students are invited to the State Science Fair to compete with their peers from across California where many of our past students have placed in the top three for their category and some have been awarded Project of the Year.

This year marked the 60th Annual Ventura County Science Fair. With categories from Animal Sciences to Physics, the science fair is designed to promote, encourage, showcase and reward the achievements of students in the various fields of science. By developing skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, students are laying the groundwork for their future success.





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