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William Kelley students explore science

William Kelley second-graders Dylan Stauss and Cole Goerdt wait patiently to set off their model volcano for the judges at the science fair. (Teri Cadeau/News-Chronicle)1 / 5
William Kelley fourth-grader Sierra Geatz shows off her display about peregrine falcons at the science fair Tuesday, May 7. (Teri Cadeau/News-Chronicle)2 / 5
William Kelley fifth-graders Madison Ollman and Kenzie Krech demonstrate their slime project for science fair attendees. (Teri Cadeau/News-Chronicle)3 / 5
Sophie Pirsig, a third-grader at William Kelley Elementary, shows off her experiment at the science fair. Sophie's experiment attempted to answer the question, "Do dogs have a color preference?" (Teri Cadeau/News-Chronicle)4 / 5
Madison Ollman shows of the stretchy properties of the slime she created at the science fair. (Teri Cadeau/News-Chronicle)5 / 5

What do dogs, peregrine falcons, and slime have in common? They're all topics students presented on at the William Kelley Science Fair on Tuesday, May 7. Students and parents at William Kelley Elementary gathered in the gymnasium in the early evening to celebrate science.

Students in grades K-5 presented their optional science fair projects to the community and two judges for consideration. As there was a wide range of ages involved in the fair, organizer Tina Davis said she kept the entry field pretty wide open.

"I told the kids to investigate an area of science that they like the most and that they want to share with the community," Davis said. "It's more about getting them engaged with science and sharing what they learn than competing with each other."

Entrants were judged on how they integrated the scientific method, on display and on their presentation skills.

Some students chose to research and present on a topic, such as fourth-grader Sierra Geatz, with her project on peregrine falcons.

"They're really cool and interesting because they were almost extinct due to the use of DDT, but now they're coming back from almost being extinct," Sierra said. "The DDT would make it so that the birds' shells were too thin and few babies would survive. But now it's banned to use that, so they're safe."

Fifth-graders Madison Ollman and Kenzie Krech chose to work together to make and present their slime project. The students combined various elements to create colorful blobs of slime.

"It's the funnest thing in the world to play with," Madison said. "You can hear the clicking and snapping noises as you mush it around."

Third-grader Sophie Pirsig conducted an experiment to see if her dog had a color preference. She would put the same type of dog treats underneath colored pieces of paper to see which one her dog would pick first when released.

"My dad helped by holding on to Dutchess (the dog) while I'd switch around the papers and make sure it wasn't the same set up," Pirsig said. "We did it three days in a row too."

In the end, Sophie concluded that Dutchess preferred the color red as she selected treats from the red paper first more times than the other colors.

Teri Cadeau

Teri Cadeau is a reporter for the Lake County News-Chronicle. 

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