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Local Schools Score High at Science Olympiad

Twenty-five teams from the Northern Virginia area competed at Carl Sandburg Middle School in the annual Science Olympiad.

Bottle Rockets, Can't Judge a Powder, Experimental Design, Life Processes, Meteorology, Metric Estimation, Naked Egg Drop, Picture This, Road Scholar, Write It Do It, Bridge Building, Crime Busters, Dynamic Planet, Forestry, Fossils, Reach for the Stars, Science of Fitness, Water Quality, Wheeled Vehicle and Wright Stuff were all names of the science competition events.

Betsy Hayward was the Science Olympiad Coach for Carl Sandburg Middle School. On her team were: Nathan Harmata, Chelsea Zabowski, Alison Underwood, Ashley Williams, William Tarpeh, Kerry Beyer, Amy Plunk, Kerry Beyer, Erika Swartz, Alex Simon, Colin Chadduck, Faith Roeung, Grace Fenstermaker, Neil Burke, Caroline Grady, and Danielle Murashige.

Overall, the Sandburg team placed second in the state competition. Individuals winning a first place ribbon were: Nathan Harmata/Wright Stuff; Chelsea Zabowski/Wheeled Vehicle; Alison Underwood and Ashley Williams/Can't Judge a Powder; and William Tarpeh and Kerry Beyer/Road Scholar.

Taking second place was: Amy Plunk and Kerry Beyer/Reach for the Stars; William Tarpeh and Erika Swartz/Dynamic Planet; and Alex Simon and Colin Chadduck/Forestry.

Alison Underwood and Ashley Williams won third place for Science Crime Busters. Other team members included: Faith Roeung, Grace Fenstermaker, Neil Burke, Caroline Grady, and Danielle Murashige.

"It was a very busy and exciting day. Sandburg received second place overall in the State competition. It was truly a team effort," said Hayward.

STUDENTS ON Walt Whitman's team medaled in Map Reading (third place to Andrew Rodriguez and Jeff Catina); Bridge Building (second place to John Reynolds and Danny Sonnenmark); and Metric Measuring (third place to Andrew Rodriguez and Jeff Catina).

Peggy White, who coached the team along with Jennifer McKee, said, "We had a strong showing also in Astronomy (Tallulah Norton and Britney Warren), Wheeled Vehicle (Justin Bush and John Sealock) and Forestry (Amanda Russ and Stephanie Maguire).

"We also decided as a team that we should have medaled in enthusiasm, too, because our students were so excited and pleased with this activity. They were all winners because of the amount of science they now know compared when we started this team."

Other members of the team were: Anika Chowdhury; Irene Dellett, Dante Farmer, James Farmer, Patrick Fitzsimmons, Emily Frankman, Mike Hull, Chelsea Layton, Phillip Morgan, Devon Stoll, and Steven Vanderford.

"The Science Olympiads is a fantastic program where students study for an entire school year on certain topics. There are 18 topics ranging from Bottle Rockets to Forestry and from Science Forensics to Fossils. We were fortunate to have some professionals volunteer their time to meet our kids and help them prepare. Lt Col. McAllister from Fort Belvoir, taught Map Reading, and Dean Norton, the head horticulturist from Mount Vernon Estate, taught Forestry.