Chittick – STEM Field Trip (11.1.19)

On Friday, November 1st, 40 fifth grade students from the Chittick Elementary School (Hyde Park, Boston, MA) came to Northeastern for a STEM field trip learning about the engineering design process, as well as the environment, particularly about pollution and over-fishing.

The students started by polluting the “Charles River” – through an interactive story, students added various pollutants to our sample river (container of clean water), seeing how the river has gotten dirtier over time, as the population along the river has increased and mistreated the water supply.

Students then designed, built, and tested water filters to clean this polluted water – the water filters were assessed based on a turbidity test, i.e. checking how cloudy or not cloudy the filtered water came out. Interestingly, the winning team (i.e. cleanest water filter) was also the cheapest design, indicating that price does not always directly correlate with quality.

During lunch, the students participated in College 101 – a Q+A session with our Northeastern volunteers, wherein Chittick students were able to ask Northeastern volunteers anything they wanted to about college.

Finally, we wrapped up the day with an overfishing activity – students learned about sustainability and overfishing – how at our current rate of fishing, we are likely to run out of large ocean fish (i.e. the fish consumers eat/care about) by 2050. In the activity, students had to manage their rotini-fish and block-fish population, balancing feeding their population, making money, and not catching too many fish. Some groups were able to maintain this careful balance, whilst other groups encountered overfishing first hand and depleted their oceans.

Wordwall (11.1.19)

Students pollute the “Charles River” – adding a mysterious liquid

Three cleanest water filter designs – holding up to the light for turbidity test

College 101 with Nick, Meghna, Sam, Maya, and Nandika

Students catch fish blindfolded – as their “fishing boat” has a power failure

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