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Mitchell Students Show Off Science and Engineering Skills

Mitchell Elementary School third-graders Jake Lambert, Shay Laudati, and Owen Miller (l-r) play foosball during the school’s Cardboard Challenge, which coincided with the school’s science fair on Thursday, Jan. 31.

WOODBURY – What is the best amount of time to wash your hands?

Did you know you can find meteors right here in Woodbury?

What happens when you pour water on Skittles?

And just how dirty are the classrooms in Mitchell Elementary School?

These questions and more were answered by about 50 students who participated Thursday in the annual Mitchell Elementary School Science Fair.

Students were required to complete their projects with minimal assistance from adults, and had to present their findings. They also had to show their scientific method on a required worksheet.

“The kids’ enthusiasm is boundless,” said Beata Cragan, Mitchell Elementary School’s science teacher. “They came in with all different kinds of ideas and I just told them to run with it. If they can learn something from it, do it.”

The science fair coincided with the school’s second-annual Cardboard Challenge, a global engineering event that was launched in response to a short film entitled, Caine’s Arcade.

Forty students in grades 4 and 5 paired up and made their own arcade games out of cardboard boxes, tubes, and other materials. Attendees then made donations starting at a penny to play them.

Games included Fortnite skee-ball, a whack-a-mole with beanie bears, foosball, a claw machine, and more.

Last year, third-graders were part of the cardboard challenge. However, the event was limited to grades 4 and 5 this year.

“We felt the engineering involved was really better for this age group and we had a lot of returning kids and the games I think are a great quality, as they were last year, too,” said Debra Benedict, the school’s library media specialist, who heads up the Cardboard Challenge project.

Money donated to play the games will go to a Woodbury charity, which the kids will vote on themselves. Last year, about $137 was raised at the event.

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