Students qualify for regional science fair

Ivanna Perez and Ashleigh Storm

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After science fair was held on Jan 25., the top three projects in each category will continue on to regionals on March 17 at Robinson High School.

Students in Honors Biology, Chemistry, and Physics participate in the science fair and present their science skills to judges in hopes of advancing in the fair. Kids from all over the county participate in  science fair, each presenting projects involved with their class course. 

After each school wide science fair, several people will move on  to the regional science fair to present their projects.

“Regionals is a competition amongst the region which is Fairfax County. Some homeschooled kids, kids in private schools, and anyone who won a prize at their school fair can compete at regionals which is a huge group of students,” said Biology teacher Caroline Gergel.

 Students prepare by researching, asking teachers about their topic and brainstorming questions they will have to answer to judges about their projects, called murder boards.

“My project is the effect of different liquids on the time it takes for Tylenol to dissolve. I plan on doing the same project. I am going to prepare a little more, do some more background research, research on questions, and that kind of stuff,” said junior Selam Negash, third place winner in Chemistry.

“My project is the effect of the shape of a boomerang on the range and direction flown. To prepare for science fair I make sure that my research is related to my project, what I’m doing, and what I measure. It needs to be relevant,” said junior Stephen Hy, second place winner in Physics. 

Other things students do to prepare is test out their experiments and create their poster boards or scientific models. 

“My project was the effect of distance of a fluorescent light from a plasma ball on the amount of light produced by the fluorescent light.” said junior Mikalah Parsons, third place winner in Physics. “To prepare for science fair I usually do a murder board and create the layout of my presentation.” 

Students who qualified for regionals must attend and register their projects, find a spot, and have their projects judged. 

This means the judges and officials will check for safety hazards in each project. On Saturday, March 18, the judging will take place all day. Students work so hard on these projects they often feel nervous, scared or have no feelings at all.

“I feel pretty normal going into Regionals this year,” says junior Ian McClelland, second place winner in Chemistry. 

“I’m not that confident [going into regionals], but you know. Whatever happens, happens. I’m okay with whatever happens,” Negash said.

“I feel pretty excited about going to regionals because this is my first time and I get to see other scientists in Fairfax County and how they do. I also feel like my project may not be the best, but I will still try my hardest and show what I got,” Hy said.

“My project is the effect of pH on seed germination. Winning was a real surprise for me. My teacher said I worked really hard, and she was happy I won. Now I’m going to regionals and it’s just a great experience.” says freshman Alexander Chounramany, first place winner in Biology.

The fair will be open to the public on Sunday, March 19 for everyone to see all the projects presented and the winners.