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Science Education Club Rocks on Pembroke Day

What better way to get students excited about rocks than to have them take one home!  The Science Education Club welcomed UNC Pembroke students and the community of local preschool, elementary and middle school students to adopt a pet rock at Pembroke Day, held on September 23rd, 2015. An estimated 450 people, young and old, visited the Science Education Club booth during Pembroke Day. The club took this opportunity to get people excited about STEM careers! The activity and supplies provided at the booth were free, thanks to a small grant from Duke Energy.

The club’s goal was to spark interest in STEM careers by providing educational information. Students who visited the booth learned about STEM careers by engaging in learning about the rock cycle and types of rocks, and by creating their own “pet rocks” to take home with them.  The club chose a wide variety of rocks from all parts of the rock cycle, many of which are found in North Carolina and are used for a variety of purposes in the state, as well as rocks exported to other countries! This gave students a chance to think critically and to compare their rocks to the different labeled samples.  Students first were able to choose the rock they wanted to adopt.  Club members assisted while students decorated their new pet rocks, but they also took advantage of the educational opportunity by conversing with participants.

 

For those who were too young or did not wish to participate in the Adopt-A-Pet Rock activity, the club provided other educational opportunities, such as coloring pages about rock types, the rock cycle, and science-related careers.  Cameron Troutman, the club president said, “Education is always our goal in the club, but to add in fun and excitement during the process is just an added benefit.” 

The Science Education Club is a student chapter of the National Science Teachers Association. Members include students in the undergraduate and graduate science education programs, but anyone who is interested in science and education is welcome to join. Upcoming events for the club include the regional science fair competition in February and a trip to the Highlands Biological Research Station in the spring.

 

(Click here for a PDF file containing the STEM literature and coloring pages used during Pembroke Day.)

Article submitted by Cameron Troutman.

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