The Future of STEM: Judging the Burroughs ES Science Fair


On Thursday, March 7th, DCSEU staff members celebrated kids in science by serving as guest judges at the John Burroughs Elementary School Science Fair for the second year in a row.

“It was exciting to see such a diverse group of participants,” said Cory Chimka, DCSEU account manager. “Every year we are impressed by this event, but they really knocked our socks off.”

With projects from 75 individual participants from grades 3-5 and group projects from PreK through Second Grade, the judges’ work was cut out for them.


According to Burroughs Math and Science teacher Jennifer Wehner, nearly every student in the elementary school is involved in the science fair.

“The science fair is important to students at John Burroughs because this gives them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned in weekly science lessons in their classrooms and STEM Lab,” said Wehner. “At Burroughs our students come with curiosity and leave with confidence.”

The first-place individual project winner was 4th grader Ethan Johnson (pictured below), whose project was called “Elevators: Cable & Hydraulic.” Johnson examined the safety of cable and hydraulic elevators. He built models of each elevator type and after several tries, he determined that hydraulic elevators are safer. When the judges asked how what he learned would impact his future elevator use, he said he would probably just take the stairs.


In the name of science, each student needed to do at least three trials to make sure their projects had valid data. The judges noted that some of the projects even focused on energy, such as how to derive energy from lemons and others featured electrical circuitry. 

“We really benefit from this event just as much as the kids do,” said Chimka.

Below is a full list of this year’s science fair winners:

Class Projects (Category 1)

1st: Ms. Watts Prek3: Chocolate Candy Conclusion

2nd: Ms. Brooks &  Ms. Gabbidon 2nd Grade: Chemical & Physcial Change of Paper

3rd: Ms. Beard PreK3: Sugar Sweet Science: Sink or Float Prek3

Individual Projects (Category 2)‚Äč

1st: Ethan Johnson 4th Grade: Elevators: Cable & Hydraulic

2nd: Jayden Butler-Myers 4th Grade: The Crystal Gems

3rd: Nawulee Coleman 3rd Grade: Bamboo

Congratulations to the winners and all of the participants at this year's science fair! 

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