The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

January 23, 2014

Budding mathematicians, scientists exhibit skills

By Erica Benjamin for the SNAP

Thursday, January 23, 2014 — Students at Norwood Elementary explored hands-on activities during Math and Science Night. In addition to offering educational activities such as the Valentine Fraction Chain and Flash Light Bulb Experiment, the Jan. 16 event also incorporated the school’s annual science fair.

Principal Tanya Crisco welcomed the families to the event and thanked Michelin for its support of the school, both financially and through other resources. Crisco said that through their partnership with Michelin, the school has received computer licenses, document cameras for every teacher and weekly tutors for the students.

“They’ve kind of adopted us,” Crisco said.

Michelin employees Mike D’anjou, Dhumketu Patel and Wade Bovard were in attendance to present information about the company and how science and mathematics are incorporated into its daily operations.

Michelin employs nearly 500 employees at its Norwood plant and makes 100,000 aircraft tires yearly.

“We’re the only plant in the world that made tires for the space shuttle,” Bovard said, adding that the plant also makes tires for C-17 aircraft.

“The military is a big part of what we do.”

Bovard went on to list some of the career opportunities that await students in science and technology fields at Michelin, including industrial engineer, computer engineering and project engineer.

D’anjou, Patel and Bovard also served as guest judges for the science projects.

“We were impressed by the projects,” Bowers said.

Patel noted the variety of ideas present during this fair.

“There are a lot of interesting topics in here,” Patel said.

“They showed a good display of scientific process and creativity.”

Fifth-grade student Emma Lemons won first place for her project comparing the heat conductivity of four different metals.

“I wanted to see which metal conducts heat the most effectively,” Lemons said.

“My best friend helped out with the idea, too,” she said, adding that her hypothesis for the project proved to be correct.

“I guessed aluminum because it was the lightest metal. I was right.”

For Lemons, the most exciting part of the project was conducting the experiment.

“I liked measuring the temperature of the metals,” she said.

Fifth-grader Bryce Alford was excited to show her project on self-inflating a balloon. Alford got the idea for her experiment online.

“I went to and found one,” Alford said.

Science, she said, is one of her favorite subjects.

“I have a good teacher and it’s fun,” Alford said.

The following fourth- and fifth-grade students were named winners:

Fourth grade: Kaydence Thomas, first place; Anne Marie Simpson, second place; Andrew Russell, third place; Savannah Huggins and Jared Westbrook, honorable mention.

Fifth grade: Emma Lemons, first place; Sarah Lowder, second place; Hannah Poteat, third place; Hannah Lyle, Cory Efird, Lauren Preslar and Jaxon Buck, honorable mention.

Students who will represent Norwood at the Stanly County Fair on Feb. 5-6 are: Emma Lemons, Sarah Lowder, Hannah Poteat, Hannah Lyle, Kaydence Thomas and Anne Marie Simpson.

Erica Benjamin is a freelance contributor for The Stanly News & Press.