Shawsville Middle School Science Night will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. Thursday Feb. 15.
Part community outreach, part family night, mostly just fun, Science Night is the second in series of efforts following last fall’s Math Night that brings together parents, children, and the school.
The evening events are designed in a systematic effort to engage parents and caregivers in education, part of the integrated, whole-community focus Shawsville is using to improve instruction and raise student achievement as it works steadily to regain full accreditation status.
“Our goal is to demonstrate to parents how what is being learned in science can be applied to everyday events,” Principal Andy Hipple said in an email.
There will be a telescope available for students and parents to explore the stars. One group will build roller coasters to explain force and momentum. One group is extracting DNA to compare other life forms to people in terms of the number of chromosomes and how traits are determined. One group will be exploring the solar system.
“These are all topics where there is a great deal of natural curiosity and parents and students can have conversations around at home,” Hipple said.
Schools have known for a long time that a strong parent interest in what children do in school increases student performance. Students want to be noticed at home for their accomplishments.
“By teaching parents about the content in school, we give them an avenue to open communication lines with the children. Parents who know the content can draw on personal experiences to support their children,” he said.