NCTC students serve as judges at Slidell Science Fair

by Darin Allred | Mar 07, 2013 <p> </p>

SLIDELL - North Central Texas College science students served as judges for a science fair at Slidell Elementary Wednesday.

"This is something we've done the last four or five years," NCTC science instructor Doris Floyd said. "A teacher from Slidell contacts me each year and we round up the students to do it. When we started off, it used to be individual instructors that would come over here, and it got to be time consuming because of the number of students enrolled in it. So we decided one year to bring a few students and it's kind of grown from there."

The judges are students in NCTC microbiology, general biology, environmental biology and zoology classes. After the science fair, they write up a synopsis of their experience and how it relates to the scientific method. They then receive extra credit in their classes.

Taylor Williams, herself a graduate of NCTC, is a fourth and fifth grade science and social studies teacher at Slidell Elementary. She organizes the science fair and is glad to have the NCTC students help out.

"It's good to have people that we know have a background in science," Williams said. "They are obviously taking science courses that give them the background they need to be good judges for our science fair."

Slidell kindergarten students do a class project together, but students in grades 1-5 turns in a science project of their own. For each grade level, there is a first, second and third place winner.

The NCTC students who served as judges were looking for specific things in each project.

"One of the things they look for is what composes the scientific method," Floyd said. "They also look at the age group and use their judgment based on the age of the student. Did the student actually do the work themselves?"

One of the student judges was freshman Jayme Ross, who said that seeing all the different ideas that the Slidell students came up with was her favorite part of the day.

"There was one that was about which mascara is better," she said. "There were just some unique projects the kids came up with."

Working with the NCTC students brought Williams full circle to the place where she began her education. She received her Associate of Arts in teaching from NCTC in Corinth before transferring to Texas Woman's University for her Bachelor's degree.

"NCTC gave me a good foundation to begin my Bachelor's degree at TWU and further my education and begin my career as a teacher," she said.