Keeping our students interested in math and science is important to their intellectual development. It is also important because they are the future working generation, and we will be in need of scientists and engineers.
That was the goal for "Science in The School Day,” a program of the Cities United for Science Progress, or CUSP.
"We are trying to instill in kids an interest in education, math and science in particular," said Sidney A. Wolf of CUSP.
The project was the "puff mobile.” Students made cars which operated on "Puff Power." They tested their cars and then went back to work to try and make them more efficient.
Students were exercising their minds and experimenting with science, all while having fun.
"It really shows that you can have fun with math and science. That you can test something you built, you can make changes to it, modify it, and make it work better," said Mayor John Robert Smith. "And that's all a part of engineering and it's really bringing it to young people at a simple level. When they have fun, maybe they want to be an engineer."
The partnership between the U.S. Conference of Mayors and DuPont allows some of its own engineers to travel to schools and help with these projects, and sometimes it's the engineers who learn something new.
"I have done this in a couple of different schools and every time I see some kids come up with something I never thought of, that's totally new," said Ken Parker, a chemical engineer for DuPont.
"First I had a triangle (sail) and it didn't go anywhere, so they told me to try to make something that goes farther," said Durelle Hightower, a fifth grader who had better luck with a larger sail.
Maybe one day these kids will design the next "wheel."