RUMFORD – The annual Mountain Valley Middle School Science and Invention Fair will be held from 2:30 to 5:45 p.m. Thursday, April 6, at the school.

Grades six, seven and eight have been developing project problems for the last two months. The students work by themselves, choosing a problem to solve and coming up with an hypothesis (an educated guess) on what they think the solution will be.

The students then devise a method of testing their hypothesis. Once the testing is completed, they determine if their results prove or disprove their original hypothesis.

Students in the seventh grade have the option of developing an invention following the same basic guidelines. Eighth-grade students will focus their efforts on developing inventions.

Each project or invention is evaluated by a scoring rubric aligned with the Maine Learning Results Standards.

The top scoring 18 projects from each grade level will participate in the science fair, with the first- through fifth-place ribbons awarded at each grade level. All participants will receive a certificate of participation. Judges will be science students from Mountain Valley High School.

John Wallace, middle school science fair coordinator, said it is amazing how the projects have become more and more sophisticated over the last 15 years.

Wallace said, “The use of computers has been the biggest contributing factor. Students use their computers for research on the Internet, layout design of their display board, word processing for their research paper and spreadsheets for creating their data tables. The graphics capabilities of the computers allow them to create their results graphs.”

He said that overall project quality has improved markedly in the seventh and eighth grade due mostly to the fact that each individual student has his/her own laptop. The sixth-grade projects have also shown marked improvements as they have access to a new mobile Apple i-book computer lab.

The science projects will be open to the public in the cafeteria on April 6. Awards will be presented in the lecture hall at approximately 5:45 p.m.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.