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Students show off inventions during science fair

2:18 PM, Jan. 24, 2013  |  Comments
Madison Elementary School fourth-graders show off their inventions during a science fair on Jan. 18.
Madison Elementary School fourth-graders show off their inventions during a science fair on Jan. 18.
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Jean Parson's fourth-grade class at Madison Elementary School held a science fair on Jan. 18. The class had began its study of energy and machines before Christmas break. Student teacher Jamie Keller helped the students learn about simple machines: incline plane, wedge, screw, wheel and axle and pulley. All of these simple machines help us do work.

The learners were asked to choose a problem they wanted to solve by using the simple machines. They could build anything they wanted but it had to be of their own invention. They also were required to prepare blue prints of their machine, write pamphlets on how the machine worked and how it would make life easier.

It was clear that the learners had fun creating their machines. The fair gave them an opportunity to display their machines and talk about what problem they were solving. Dalton Cutler even gave his machine a name, "Dalton Tron 3000." This was a 48-inch pole that had a measuring tape, magnet, hook, lights, paper clips and pencil on it. One of the problems this solved was picking up items off the floor with the magnet or hook without having to bend over. An incline plane was incorporated into his machine. Parker Viegut had a compound machine which used an incline plane and a wedge.

Most of the students agreed the science fair was a good way to show what they learned and was better than having a written test.

Contributed by Diana Mrozinski, volunteer communications liaison for Madison Elementary School.

Washington Elementary School

Lois Miller is a crossing guard at Main Street and Sunset Avenue in the village of Park Ridge. She recently was honored for that role during Adult Crossing Guard Recognition Week.

Miller helps eight to 10 children cross the very busy intersection in warmer weather - a few less during the winter. Miller is at her post from 8:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. every school day, regardless of the temperature.

On a recent chilly morning, with a temperature of 6 degrees and wind chill of -12 degrees, Washington Elementary School principal Bill Carlson surprised Miller at her post to present cards made by students and cinnamon rolls made by the school's cooks.

This is Miller's fourth year as an adult crossing guard. Prior to retirement, she worked as a cook at Stevens Point Area Senior High.

In spite of some close calls with vehicles, Miller said she enjoys her crossing guard duties. "It gets me out of the house," she said.

Contributed by Marti Sowka, volunteer communications liaison for Washington Elementary School.

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