Academics, Events

Celebrating Math and Science at Winterfest

The entire Northwest School community joined in Winterfest, an annual celebration of math and science, on Dec. 21.

“Winterfest is a way to highlight the creativity and the imagination, excitement, and beauty of math and science,” says Physics teacher Cecilia Tung. “It is also an important way to celebrate and honor the different disciplines at the school.”

Students rotated throughout the school interacting with presentations from the 7th grade life science, 8th grade earth science, 9th grade math, 10th grade biology, 11th grade chemistry, and 12th grade physics and advanced chemistry classes. Winterfest has long been a tradition at Northwest, though this year it was redesigned to promote more student engagement.

“We want the students to be engaged the whole day, to come into presentations and get hands-on with the science and math,” explains Physics teacher Cecilia Tung on why Winterfest changed. “In the past, it was primarily about the audiences watching the science rather than doing it.”

The day began with a pendulum demonstration from Physics students. Moving in groups, students performed chemical reactions from chemistry students, tested salinity with earth science students, built free-standing paper towers with physics students, took health measurements for a deep-data plunge with biology students, and performed field-of-vision tests with life science students.

“Winterfest is a challenge for our students because they are presenting, explaining, and acting as facilitators for their peers,” says Cecilia. “It is a great skill to have and teaches them how to successfully communicate scientific ideas.”