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Enhancing The Classroom

Students Enjoy ‘Mad Scientist’ Activity

Bush Elementary School second graders Aliana Cosme and Vivian Arthurs react to their “Mad Scientist” STEM experiment during the Bush Advantage After School Program. Students created “elephant toothpaste” from hydrogen peroxide, food coloring, yeast and water creating an Exothermic Reaction.

Have you ever heard of elephant toothpaste? Neither had Bush Elementary School second graders in the Bush Advantage After School Program until they created it through a “Mad Scientist” STEM activity. Students learned that each tiny foam bubble is filled with oxygen and created a reaction called an Exothermic Reaction – meaning it not only created foam, it created heat.

Bush Elementary School students love their “Mad Scientist” activity, which is just one of many they can choose from during their after school program, a partnership with the Jamestown YWCA. The program runs every school day from 3 to 6 p.m. Students receive a snack, homework help and the opportunity to choose two different activities to do each day. Fridays are a free choice day where students start their weekend early with gym games, computer fun, arts and crafts, as well as, board games and make-believe. Current activities in addition to Mad Scientist and Free Fridays include: Native American History, Spanish language instruction, literature enrichment, math skills, physical education and community service projects. Students also have the opportunity to learn from Infinity Visual & Performing Arts staff and receive help from Chautauqua Striders tutoring.

“After school programs are important to me because I see what they do for the students and the community,” said Michael Kapler, Bush After School Program Site Coordinator. “I see when students leave for the day begging their parents to stay just a little longer. I see parents coming off from full day work schedules, with less worry knowing their students are learning, safe and having fun. Students are given the opportunity to enhance skills and learn something new, without even realizing they are absorbing and re-solidifying important information. Each afterschool staff member loves their job and chooses to give 100% to these kiddos from craft activities, to experiments, to loving words of encouragement and just being positive leaders and examples. Students get to learn interpersonal skills, see new cultures and different lifestyles, and meet friends they might not otherwise meet. I believe elementary-level after school programs can make so many tiny wonderful differences and I believe our futures are dependent on those tiny differences.”

Bush Advantage After School Program still has a few openings. If you are interested in signing up your child, please call 338-3827 or email bushadvantage@jpsny.org.

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