Surry County science fair winners advance to regional competition


By Terri Flagg - [email protected]



Sydney Edwards, first place winner of the 2016-2017 Surry County District Science Fair for the high school engineering division, poses with her trophy after the Nov. 21 competition. Edwards, of North Surry, titled her project “Browne Topper.” Shown also are Earlie Coe, school board member, and Chuck Graham, associate superintendent.


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Daniel Alvarez and Brandon Norman, Surry Central, receive the first place trophy for the 2016-2017 Surry County District Science Fair in the high school biological sciences division. From left are Earlie Coe, school board member, Alvarez, Norman, and Chuck Graham, associate superintendent. Their winning project, titled “Different Light Effects on Photosynthesis,” was held at Meadowview Magnet Middle School.


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Dante Watson, shown here, earns first place in the middle school Earth and Environmental Science division. With him are Superintendent Travis Reeves and school board members Mamie Sutphin and Clark Goings. The Central Middle School student’s project was “Shining Light.”


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McKenna Merrit, of Central Middle School, earns first place in her school division for her project titled “Gas It Up.” Last year she won first place in the elementary school division.


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Weatherly Reaves and Jasmine Narehood earn first place in the biological sciences B division for their project titled “Did You Get It From Your Momma.” With them are Superintendent Travis Reeves and school board members Mamie Sutphin and Clark Goings.


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A local science fair demonstrated that an old-school event can keep up with modern trends in education.

The 2016-2017 Surry County Schools District Science Fair was held Nov. 21 at Meadowview Magnet Middle School.

“It has actually grown and expanded throughout the years,” said Jeff Edwards, Science Institute coordinator for the school system.

“We now have categories which include technology and engineering, to incorporate more of the other areas of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), not just science,” said Edwards, who coordinates the district fair.

“There’s physics and mathematics, and engineering and technology. In the last couple of years those have been added as separate categories.”

Providing those extra subjects gives students a wider area from which to choose a project, said Edwards, noting that participation has grown particularly at the middle school level.

Participants each first competed successfully at their home schools in order to participate in the district event, which consisted of 33 projects from the elementary level, 43 from middle school and 30 from high school.

“Science fairs have long been a tradition in the county school system,” said Sonia Dickerson, director of communications for the schools. “Science fairs provide an opportunity for students in third through 12th grades who are interested in science and technology to pursue their personal areas of interest and display their research. Teachers encourage science fair participation to create enthusiasm in science and technology while encouraging project-based inquiry.”

Winners from each level of competition will advance to the N.C. Science and Engineering Fair regional competition.

Volunteer judges at the district event were tapped from the community.

“We use a variety of people,” that this year included Surry Community College professors and local professionals, Edwards said.

Participants are scored according to five different categories: creative ability, scientific thought, skill and thoroughness, clarity and presentation, and an interview.

“This is not just showing one evening presentation,” Edwards explained. “Some of these projects take weeks for students to put together. They are held to very high standards in terms of paperwork and documentation just as if they were completing a research project at a very high level.”

Although some teachers may require a student submit a science fair project, participation is typically extra-curricular.

The regional competition will be held Dec. 13 at Appalachian State University in Boone. Local students will compete against those from Avery, Burke, Caldwell, Watauga, Ashe, Catawba, Alleghany, Wilkes, Yadkin, Iredell, Alexander and Davie counties.

“We are one of the largest regions in the entire state, not in area but in the number of projects that are put on display,” said Edwards.

Participants for the statewide fair, which will be held in March 2017, are chosen at the regional fairs.

2016 Surry County District Science Fair winners

High School – first and second place winners will advance to the Dec. 13 regional competition.

•Biological Sciences A

1st – Brandon Norman, Daniel Alverrez; Surry Central High School, “Different Light Effects on Photosynthesis”

2nd – Elijah Dunn; East Surry High School, “How Will Air Restrictions Affect Plant Growth”

• Biological Sciences B

1st – Cortland Hardy, Dannis Cazarez; Surry Early College, “Correlation Between Personality Type and Test Performance”

2nd – Nathan Sheets; East Surry High School, “Vitamin C”

• Chemistry

1st – Jessica Frost; Surry Early College, “An ‘Organic’ Organic Project”

2nd – Brittany Shelton, Brianna Bobbit; North Surry High School, “Essential Oils Break it Down”

• Physics & Mathematics

1st – Nicholas Conzone; North Surry High School, “Literally Rocket Science”

2nd – Ariel Kulzisk, Brandon Knighton; Surry Early College, “Leap of Faith or Fail”

• Earth & Environmental Science

1st – Ian Dollyhite; East Surry High School, “Into Thin Air”

• Technology

1st – Sadie Williams; Surry Central High School, “Talking vs. Texting”

• Engineering

1st – Sydney Edwards; North Surry High School, “Brown Topper”

2nd – Abigail Martin; East Surry High School, “Seeing Is Believing”

Middle Schoolfirst and second place winners will advance to the Dec. 13 regional competition.

• Biological Sciences A

1st – Chloe Snow; Central Middle School, “Do All Plants Grow at the Same Rate Under Different Sources of Light”

2nd – Reagon Amos, Carrigan Willard, Marissa Lopea; Meadowview Magnet Middle School, “Eggcellent Oxygen”

• Biological Sciences B

1st – Jasmine Narehood, Weatherly Reaves; Meadowview Magnet Middle School, “Did You Get It From Your Momma”

2nd – Amelia York; Gentry Middle School, “What Exercise Affects Your Beat”

• Chemistry

1st – Landon Smith; Meadowview Magnet Middle School, “Lyte it Up”

2nd – Kassi Hiatt; Pilot Mountain Middle School, “Using Chemical Reactions to Blow Up Balloons”

• Physics & Mathematics

1st – Rachel Carter; Central Middle School, “Bounce Baby”

2nd – Kara Bryant; Gentry Middle School, “Which Cup Should You Grab”

• Earth & Environmental Sciences

1st – Eli Billings; Gentry Middle School, “Does the Color of Soil Affect pH”

2nd – Joy Tilley; Meadowview Magnet Middle School, “Whit is the Effect of Acid Rain on Seeds”

• Technology

1st – Dante Watson; Central Middle School; “Shining Light’

• Engineering

1st – Kevin Blakeney; Pilot Mountain Middle School, “What Type of Bridge is Strongest”

2nd – Joshua Burkart, Hayden Burkhart; Meadowview Magnet Middle School, “Science Fair 500”

Elementary Schoolall winners will advance to the Dec. 13 regional competition.

1st

• McKenna Merrit, Copeland Elementary School, “Gas It Up”

2nd

• Sophie Hutchens, Shoals Elementary School, “H20 What You Need to Know”

• Daniel Vernon, Franklin Elementary School, “Amazing Milk To Plastic”

• Abygail Caro, Flat Rock Elementary School, “Can A Hampster Go Through a Maze,”

3rd

• Luke Creed, Copeland Elementary School, “Jell-o vs. the Enzyme Bromelain”

• Kaylee Edwards, Cedar Ridge Elementary School, “Music to the Heart”

• Reagan Snow, Mountain Park Elementary School, “What Keeps Apples From Turning Brown”

4th

• Jaxie Draughn, Cedar Ridge Elementary School, “Yeti vs. Ozark”

• Madison Gray, White Plains Elementary School, “Bubble Blast”

• Brennan Lawson, Westfield Elementary School, “Hotter?”

• Morgan Lynch, Pilot Mountain Middle School, “Does Color Matter?”

Sydney Edwards, first place winner of the 2016-2017 Surry County District Science Fair for the high school engineering division, poses with her trophy after the Nov. 21 competition. Edwards, of North Surry, titled her project “Browne Topper.” Shown also are Earlie Coe, school board member, and Chuck Graham, associate superintendent.
http://mtairynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/web1_H-School-Engineering-Sidney-Edwards-1st-place-with-Mr.-Earlie-Coe-and-Mr.-Chuck-GrahamJPG-2-3.jpgSydney Edwards, first place winner of the 2016-2017 Surry County District Science Fair for the high school engineering division, poses with her trophy after the Nov. 21 competition. Edwards, of North Surry, titled her project “Browne Topper.” Shown also are Earlie Coe, school board member, and Chuck Graham, associate superintendent. Submitted

Daniel Alvarez and Brandon Norman, Surry Central, receive the first place trophy for the 2016-2017 Surry County District Science Fair in the high school biological sciences division. From left are Earlie Coe, school board member, Alvarez, Norman, and Chuck Graham, associate superintendent. Their winning project, titled “Different Light Effects on Photosynthesis,” was held at Meadowview Magnet Middle School.
http://mtairynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/web1_HS-Biological-Science-A-Brandon-Norman-and-Daniel-Alverez-with-Mr.-Earlie-Coe-and-Mr.-Chuck-Graham-1.jpgDaniel Alvarez and Brandon Norman, Surry Central, receive the first place trophy for the 2016-2017 Surry County District Science Fair in the high school biological sciences division. From left are Earlie Coe, school board member, Alvarez, Norman, and Chuck Graham, associate superintendent. Their winning project, titled “Different Light Effects on Photosynthesis,” was held at Meadowview Magnet Middle School. Submitted

Dante Watson, shown here, earns first place in the middle school Earth and Environmental Science division. With him are Superintendent Travis Reeves and school board members Mamie Sutphin and Clark Goings. The Central Middle School student’s project was “Shining Light.”
http://mtairynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/web1_M-School-Technology-Dante-Watson-1st-place-with-Dr.-Travis-Reeves-Mrs.-Mamie-sutphin-and-Mr-Clark-Goings-2.jpgDante Watson, shown here, earns first place in the middle school Earth and Environmental Science division. With him are Superintendent Travis Reeves and school board members Mamie Sutphin and Clark Goings. The Central Middle School student’s project was “Shining Light.” Submitted

McKenna Merrit, of Central Middle School, earns first place in her school division for her project titled “Gas It Up.” Last year she won first place in the elementary school division.
http://mtairynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/web1_Mckenna-Merrit-5.jpgMcKenna Merrit, of Central Middle School, earns first place in her school division for her project titled “Gas It Up.” Last year she won first place in the elementary school division. Submitted

Weatherly Reaves and Jasmine Narehood earn first place in the biological sciences B division for their project titled “Did You Get It From Your Momma.” With them are Superintendent Travis Reeves and school board members Mamie Sutphin and Clark Goings.
http://mtairynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/web1_THisOneToo.jpgWeatherly Reaves and Jasmine Narehood earn first place in the biological sciences B division for their project titled “Did You Get It From Your Momma.” With them are Superintendent Travis Reeves and school board members Mamie Sutphin and Clark Goings. Submitted

By Terri Flagg

[email protected]

Reach Terri Flagg at 415-4734.

Reach Terri Flagg at 415-4734.

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