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2012 Annual Science Report

University of Wisconsin Reporting  |  SEP 2011 – AUG 2012

EPO Activity: Project 5: Student Workshops

Project Progress

WARC team members and UW Madison Geology Museum personnel led workshops for the African American Ethnic Academy, a summer science program run by the BTC Institute and partially funded by NASA and the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium. In our workshops, 24 students did hands on experiments looking for life in Mars “soil” and explored the concept of “what is life?”.

Students from the African American Ethnic Academy look for life in Mars “soil”. (Photo credit: The BioPharmaceutical Technology Center Institute’s summer science program: A Celebration of Life XVII: Geology on Earth and Mars!)

Via the UW Madison DELTA program, WARC graduate student Liz Percak-Dennett partnered with two classrooms (20 2nd-4th grade students) at Lowell Elementary in Madison, Wisconsin to teach them about microbial cycling. Together they harvested local lake mud and made Winogradsky columns, performed tests on the columns and learned about microbial cycling.

Lowell Elementary 2nd and 3rd graders show off their Winogradsky columns and Life in the Extreme trading cards.