Tuesday, May 10, 2016

OU-C adjunct faculty member and student lead award-winning science writing project for Unioto Elementary classroom


By student public relations writer Leah Sternberger
A class of second grade students at Unioto Elementary School led by Jennifer Domo, adjunct faculty member in education at Ohio University-Chillicothe, and Jaimee Jenkins, an early childhood education major, recently won the DuPont Challenge Science Essay Competition.

The national competition encourages students to get to the edge of scientific discovery by writing about a technological or scientific development on the topics of food, energy, protection or innovation. The SCOPES (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) class’ book was chosen first in the nation out of 9,000 entries.

The second graders’ winning book was about health and nutrition. With guidance from Domo and Jenkins, the students extensively researched and worked together to illustrate and explain their findings in writing. The finished book was made up of work entirely done by the students.

As winners of the national competition, Unioto Elementary will receive a trophy in addition to a collection of Britannica eBooks and encyclopedias for scientific research. Each child in the second grade SCOPES class will receive a free bag of scientific materials, and the whole school will receive a "Science is Fun" day hosted by DuPont and NASA.

Additionally, Domo and Jenkins will attend the 2017 National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) Conference for free in Los Angeles next March.

“We’re really going to benefit from attending the conference,” said Domo.  “We will have the opportunity to network with teachers from across the country and meet vendors who can supply us with tech materials for our children to use in the classroom.”

For Jenkins, the conference offers an opportunity to jumpstart her career in education, and to learn how to bring science and exploration into the classroom.

“The NSTA Conference is going to be a once in a lifetime opportunity for me,” Jenkins said.  “Personally, I love science and I love the curiosity it instills in young children so being able to attend this conference and learn new ways to incorporate science into my future classroom is going to be an amazing experience. I have already assured all of my Early Childhood peers that when I return I will share all of my knowledge and resources with them to jump start more science education in our area.”

The experience has been extremely valuable for Jenkins and speaks to the career training she has received during her field work in Domo's SCOPES classroom at Unioto Elementary.

“This opportunity has made me even more excited to start my career in early childhood education and to bring new and exciting science experiences to the children in my classroom. With this experience and with the knowledge I have gained, I hope to be an asset to whatever school district I end up teaching in.”

Domo believes the second grade class’ success is evidence of the successful partnership between OU-C and Unioto Elementary.

“Our students’ success in the competition and growth in the classroom is a result of the wonderful partnership Unioto has with Ohio University. It’s a win-win for the elementary school, the college and the students. This is proof of the caliber of the program and the power of collaborating to create a learning environment where everyone thrives,” Domo said.

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