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As a middle-school parent when you hear the words ‘science fair’ during the new school year open house or from your kids – sometimes you just want to run away! It’s okay- we’ve all been there. This time I encourage you to EMBRACE IT. Your middle-school students have the opportunity to apply for the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge that has a grand prize of $25,000! The title of “America’s Top Young Scientist” also is a fantastic honor. HURRY… video applications are due by APRIL 21, 2015.
Aside from the potential cash prize is a unique learning opportunity for the Top 10 finalists. The final ten selected student finalists will have an exclusive opportunity to work directly with a 3M scientist during a summer mentorship program. The students will be challenged to create an innovation that actually solves a problem in society. How amazing is that? Past Challenge winners have gone on to speak in front of members of Congress, work with the nation’s top scientists, participate in the White House Science Fair, meet the President and pursue academic careers in the sciences. This truly is a wonderful opportunity for your student and you have absolutely NOTHING to lose so we encourage everyone to submit their videos immediately.
FOR THE VIDEO SUBMISSION REQUIRED BY APRIL 21, 2015: Middle school students are asked to create a one to two-minute video communicating the science behind a possible solution for an everyday problem. Since not everyone creates videos all the time, here are some key tips to help your student with their video submission:
TOP TIPS FOR YOUR STUDENT TO CREATE A VIDEO:
- Stay within the 1 – 2 minute (no more than 120 seconds) video requirement
- Have your student speak slowly and clearly
- Have your student define their project in their own words
- Your student should feel comfortable with the submission
- The project explanation should come across naturally
- Practice several times and review the video for clear sound
- Be sure to keep the video steady
- Be sure the location is quiet
- Keep all distractions to a minimum
- The video should focus on only your student and the project explanation
The Competition Timeline will follow this schedule:
- April 21st – Video Entry Deadline REMEMBER: Middle school students are asked to create a one to two-minute video communicating the science behind a possible solution for an everyday problem.
- June/July – Ten finalists will be announced and have an exclusive opportunity to work directly with a 3M scientist during a summer mentorship program, during which they were challenged to create an innovation which solves a problem in society. State Merit Winners are also announced at this time.
- October: Finalists will demonstrate their scientific innovation and creativity in a series of challenges at the 3M Innovation Center in St. Paul, MN.
The 3M Young Scientist Challenge Facebook page also is a great resource. 3M is a science-based company with a culture of creative collaboration that inspires powerful technologies, making life better, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of curriculum-based digital content.
For this year’s school Science Fair, my husband and I had our daughters work nearly solo on the whole project- from design to write up to layout. We wanted them to excel on their own- for better or for worse. What happened? One made it to the actual county science fair and the other got a 99 and a ‘superior’ rating. One of the best grades ever!! Allowing kids to fly solo is a hard parental decision but well worth it when the time is right. We’ll be talking about this idea more with our Los Tweens & Teens experts.
Good luck amigos! We’re excited to enter the 3M competition and wish everyone well. We will follow up and share the winners. What do you think about the challenge? Share your comments below.
HERE IS THE SITE FOR ALL DETAILS: www.YoungScientistChallenge.com
Cristy is the founder and publisher of Los Tweens & Teens, as well as the co-CEO & partner of DiMe Media, based in Miami. Born to Cuban parents, she’s a ‘Jersey Girl’ who is the proud mom of twin teens and wife to her college sweetheart, a “gringo” with a Latino soul! Cristy is also a teen cancer survivor, lover of travel, tech, good food, all-things beauty related, family cooking and social sharing.