For three days in March, Stony Brook University had visits from the Bayport-Blue Point School District. Fourth-grade, fifth-grade, and high-school students each had separate visits to campus, totaling 82 students.
The fourth-grade students participated in the “Genes in a Bottle”/Maker Day activity hosted by M. Ete Chan, Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. For this lab experience, students from the Biomedical Engineering Society assisted in helping the students isolate their own DNA. Then they took part in a creative brainstorming activity related to various medical scenarios. Next, the students dissected coffee makers, laptops, and other various appliances to learn how they work in the Appliance Autopsy hosted by Mzia Tabukashvili, iCREATE Graduate Student Manager. The students wore protective glasses and used hammers, screwdrivers and pliers to dismantle the appliances for a look into their workings.
The fifth-grade students explored the Geology Lab learning about plants and terrain with Gilbert N. Hanson, Distinguished Service Professor in the Department of Geosciences. Professor Hanson led the group on a discussion about a living environment outside of the Earth and Space Science Building. The students examined campus dirt to learn about the ecosystem, and used the stream table in the lab for understanding ways water impacts land. At the next stop, the students took a tour of the TV Studio on campus and learned how to identify fake news with a News Literacy Presentation by Erika Karp, Staff Assistant in the School of Journalism.
One young fifth grader, Christine Czeisel, proudly wore the DNA pendant she had made the year before on her visit in fourth grade. Both groups were managed by Ellen Vlachos, Gifted and Talented Program Teacher based in Academy Street Elementary School. “I was so impressed with the various programs throughout the campus, and I appreciate the collaborative experience for our students to learn from the Stony Brook students.”
The high-school students played STEAM Jeopardy, a game created by Dr. Christine Veloso, Co-Director of the Science Technology Entry Program. Three teams competed in the interactive game where contestants tried to match the job description and activity with a job title. This helped them to connect to careers paths when studying STEAM subjects. The students then had an admissions talk from Robert Pertusati, Associate Dean of Admissions, a tour of the Campus Recreation Center from Christina Padrazo, Assistant Director of Marketing and Membership, and the News Literacy Presentation from Erika Karp.
“This partnership has created opportunities for the students of Bayport-Blue Point to enhance the lessons they learn in the classroom,” said Bayport-Blue Point School District Superintendent Timothy P. Hearney. “Every time we can get our students onto a college campus, we offer them an opportunity to increase their knowledge of what they may want to do once they leave BBP. I cannot thank the University enough for everything they have offered to our students.”
The visits were coordinated by the Bayport-Blue Point School District and the Stony Brook University Office of Community Relations.