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John Jay Middle School Students Display Works At Annual Science Fair

John Jay Middle School eighth-grade student Ashley Stagnari received an award for her project “Salmon’s Big Hit” at the school’s science fair.
John Jay Middle School eighth-grade student Ashley Stagnari received an award for her project “Salmon’s Big Hit” at the school’s science fair. Photo Credit: Katonah-Lewisboro School District
John Jay Middle School seventh-grade student Kaitlyn Machado received an award for her project “Asthma and Activities” at the school’s science fair.
John Jay Middle School seventh-grade student Kaitlyn Machado received an award for her project “Asthma and Activities” at the school’s science fair. Photo Credit: Katonah-Lewisboro School District
John Jay Middle School seventh-grader Peter Gressler, right, helps a fellow student operate the “hoverboard” he created for the school’s science fair.
John Jay Middle School seventh-grader Peter Gressler, right, helps a fellow student operate the “hoverboard” he created for the school’s science fair. Photo Credit: Katonah-Lewisboro School District

LEWISBORO, N.Y. -- John Jay Middle School students shared facts about microscopes, ecosystems, hurricanes, hoverboards and more recently during the school’s 33rd annual science fair.

Students displayed their poster boards and project equipment in the school library on March 30, where they presented to judges, parents, teachers and peers passing through. Seventh-grade student Kaitlyn Machado shared that her project, “Activities and Asthma,” was inspired by her own experience with the condition.

“I measured the heartbeats of 30 friends before and after exercise,” said Machado, who used a pool of fellow students both with and without asthma. “I found that people with asthma had a higher heart rate before and after exercise.”

Eighth-grader Ashley Stagnari, who received an award for her project, “Salmon’s Big Hit,” is an enthusiastic advocate for animal rights. Her project explored the factors that cause wild salmon populations to decrease, including aquatic pollution and global warming.

Tejas Chimata studied “Ferrofluid” for his project, which he said is known for its use in fueling rockets. However, its magnetic quality, he shared, is being tested for possible use as a cancer treatment. “It’s still in testing, but there is a possible application,” he said.

The afternoon concluded with an awards ceremony. All participating sixth-grade students received medals for their efforts and will have the option of taking part in the science fair in the next two years. Seventh- and eighth-grade students’ projects were judged by a panel – Eva Cisneros, Tammy Eliades, Lisa Frese, Hilda Gressler, Lauren Grizzoffi, Dawn Kamerman, Clark Landis, Ken Roban, Jeff Tepper and Lynn Tobin. Gift cards were provided for the winners by the PTO, as well as participation awards for students who have researched projects for all three years of middle school.

Science teachers Gregg Kastanis and Zach Miller said they hope the science fair will encourage students to continue exploring their interest in the sciences in high school and beyond.

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