Sign up for the 2014 Virtual Science Fair
The deadline to sign up for the 2014 Virtual Science Fair has been extended to December 15, 2013.
To sign up, contact Dr. Whitney Elmore at firstname.lastname@example.org. The fee is $300 per school, regardless of how many students from the school participate. The program is open to NAIS member schools. More information is available at the: NAIS Virtual Science Fair 2014.
About the Virtual Science Fair
NAIS, in conjunction with the Near East and South Asia Schools Association (NESA), is piloting a program that uses e-mentors (teachers, scientists, and graduate students) to work online with teams of eighth graders, who compete with other schools in the virtual fair. The VSF is lead by Whitney Elmore, Macon State College (GA).
The Virtual Science Fair is a unique forum in which middle school teams of 1-3 students, research a topic of interest within the sciences. The work takes place in February through April.
What makes this science fair different from the rest? With the aid of an e-mentor, these students compete locally and nationally with other NAIS-member schools from around the country in a virtual platform. E-mentors are carefully chosen scientists, college science and/or education majors and professors from across the globe. Together, with the aid of modern technology, e-mentors and their student collaborators work to develop a comprehensive scientific project which students will execute and use to enhance their scientific understanding and skill set. Locally, school teams compete for the chance to advance through several "virtual" rounds with the ultimate goal of being named the NAIS-VSF Champion. The NAIS-VSF Champion will compete on an international level with student teams from around the globe. Combining student engagement in the sciences with modern technology and professional guidance, this project is an exciting journey into the world of virtual science fairs.
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2013 Virtual Science Fair Winners
1st Place - Canton Country Day School Team "Swimming"
Won for a study of finger positioning used in swimming strokes to determine which is the most efficient. Small changes can reduce times in competitive events. Used models of a hand in 4 different positions (degree of spread of fingers) which were suspended in a water tank while the water was pushed against them by a pump and the resistance was measured by a pressure sensor. The experiment was repeated 120 times for each model and the results tabulated.
2nd Place - The Langley School Team 38
Investigated how the amount of salinity in water affects buoyancy.
3rd Place - The Langley School Team 37
Investigated how green fluorescent protein, which makes jellyfish glow, might be used in cells of other animals as a tracking device, by injecting it into human cells in a lab.
2012 Virtual Science Fair Winners
For the second year in a row, The Chapin School in New York City has won the NAIS National Virtual Science Fair competition for middle school students.
Emily Ryeom of The Chapin School won first prize for her experiments on using different agents to illuminate oil. The idea is that an illuminating agent could be added to oil spills, enabling cleanup crews to work in the dark as well as during daylight – something that would increase efficiency and speed the cleanup process.
Second place went to Stefanie Pousoulides from Canton Country Day School (OH), who conducted experiments on the properties and movement of banana DNA and various food coloring dyes using gel electrophoresis (the motion of dispersed particles relative to a fluid under the influence of a spatially uniform electric field).
Third place went to Mia Perry from Pine Point School (CT). The Fourth and Fifth Place finishers, Sofia Caro and Katherine Jovanovic, are both from Pine Crest Preparatory School (FL).
Emily and Stephanie will now compete for the International Virtual Science Fair championship against teams from 8 other countries. Emily, who is participating in a pilot program teaming students from different countries, will be working with students from international schools in Israel and Germany.
2011 Virtual Science Fair Winners
Amelia O'Donohue, Lily McCann, and Susan Yun of The Chapin School (NY) are the winners of the NAIS Virtual Science Fair for 2011. They were selected by e-judges as the top team in the overall competition for middle schools, which involved 8 schools and more than 300 students. The winning project explored the relationship between the circumference of a balloon and ambient air temperature.
Contact Whitney Elmore, director NAIS-VSF, at email@example.com, or Paul Miller, NAIS senior director of global initiaties, at firstname.lastname@example.org.