COE undergrads assist in district-wide Project Eaglet
During the two weeks between January 17-27, all nine elementary schools in Bulloch County brought their fourth graders to Georgia Southern’s Statesboro campus. Each day students from a different school spent two hours at the Russell Union learning about the properties of light and sound. Groups of 10-12 students rotated through eleven stations in order to earn their Great Gretsch Sound badge as part of an ambitious new program called Project Eaglet.
Beginning in 2023, and funded by the Kiwanis Club of Statesboro, Project Eaglet aims to bring Bulloch County students to a different outreach center at Georgia Southern University’s Statesboro Campus each year. Project Eaglet has coordinated first graders visiting the Botanic Garden, second graders visiting the Planetarium, third graders visiting the Museum, fourth graders experiencing The Great Gretsch Sound, and fifth graders visiting the Wildlife Center. At the end of five years, students who collect a badge from each outreach center will have completed the full Project Eaglet experience.
In order to ensure the fourth graders visiting The Great Gretsch Sound get the most out of their visit, the Fred and Dinah Gretsch School of Music reached out to the College of Education for assistance. The challenge was to develop a student experience that imparts Georgia fourth grade standards for light and sound. Kania Greer, Coordinator of the Center for STEM Education, took on the College of Education’s role in the project, working with the Gretsch School of Music and also the College of Engineering and Computing. She says, “All of us at the university have a good handle on how to help one another with projects. It takes everyone to pull off something of this scale.”
For the College of Education’s part, Drs. Katie Brkich, Alesia Moldavan, and Bailey Nafziger enlisted undergraduate students in practicum and methods classes to develop standards-based lessons last semester. Then, undergraduate students this semester implemented the lessons at five of the 11 stations.
The five College of Education stations were:
- How much light shines through?
- How do we use light and sound to communicate?
- What do we see when light bends?
- How can you change Sound?
- How does light interact with mirrors?
The Fred and Dinah Gretsch School of Music stations were:
- Sound Wave Frequency.
- Little Things Sound High.
- Loud Things Have Tall Sound Waves.
- Sound Waves Travel Through Objects.
- Melody Glasses.
The College of Engineering and Computing station was:
- Wearable Sound and Light, Generating Sound and Light Using a Microcontroller
Greer assisted each day of the project and reports, “I kept hearing, ‘This is so cool,’ ‘This is so fun,’ ‘Why can’t we do this every day?’ ‘I didn’t know I could do that here,’ but the best thing is just to see the smiles on the kids’ faces.” She adds, “It only takes one person to change the trajectory of a child’s life for good or for bad, and we want to be people that change it for good.”