Let's Explore Applied Physical Science
University of California Santa Barbara
LEAPS graduate Fellows and lead teachers engaged their students and families in the first Family Science Exploration (FuSE) evening program in November 2005 at Santa Barbara Junior High. LEAPS fellow Michael Quinn guided this event planning appropriate science experiments and recruiting 7 UCSB physical science graduates to lead sessions. Lead teachers demonstrated the support of their school by having all the non-LEAPS science teachers present and participating as well as the assistant principal and a bilingual teacher. The explorations led families through three hands-on science experiments that represented topics from 7th grade life science and 8th grade physical science. During the check-in process, each family got a “passport” and traveled to different rooms for the experiments. To accommodate the Spanish speaking families, several Spanish-only classrooms were run by bilingual UCSB graduate students. Participants were able to take home all the experiments that they worked on: calcium chloride binding chains of alginate to form beads mimicking Giant Kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera), process of electroplating and electrodeposition of metal on penny, and building an electromagnet to power a motor. The families were encouraged to share their new discoveries with other friends and family members.