Maker’s Fair shows the fun in science

Zoe Hahn and Liberty Hahn's roller coaster had you choose sides: Marvel or DC?


            Mini roller coasters made of paper, plastic, wood, recycled material and student creativity drew oohs and ahs from impressed elementary students as Sigourney junior high students hosted a Maker’s Fair in the school’s small gym on Tuesday, April 11.

            The junior high students consisted of seventh grade Life Science students and eighth grade Earth Science students that partnered up to create their mini roller coasters under this year’s them of “Newton’s Racetrack” using concepts they learned in science and math to showcase their understanding of Newton’s Law through science. Partners had more than a month to design and create their roller coasters using an established ratio to explain their work. They also had to create a company, a logo and meet the criteria for the Newton’s Law assessment.

            “I started the Maker's Fair as part of an assessment for the Newton's Law Unit last year,” Jeni Harter, the junior high science teacher at Sigourney said. “It gives the students something different. It really appeals to those students who learn hands-on.”

            From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. that day, elementary and high school students visited the gym to check out the junior high creations and ran marbles through the roller coasters to see gravity in action. Last year, students created arcade games to show the learning standard according to Harter and she hopes to continue doing Maker’s Fairs in the future to benefit the student’s learning.

            “It is great to see where their creations started and where they finished,” Harter said. “There are many days of trial and error which is difficult for some students, as they want to create something and have it always work the first time. This project does an excellent job of bringing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) into the classroom.

            To see photos of the junior high student’s creations go to our SmugMug gallery at