STEM-powered family fun awaits at the 4-H Science Bonanza

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Hands-on fun with Slime! Courtesy Photo

Sick of watching Saturday morning cartoons? Want to skip out on weekend errands and chores? Spend some time with your family finding electricity in lemons, making “goo” and having STEM-powered fun instead! The UNH STEM Discovery Lab hosts its second annual 4-H Science Bonanza on Saturday, Dec. 8 from 9 a.m. to 3: 30 p.m. Though the event is geared primarily toward youth ages 5-13, adults and older kids are welcome to join the festivities.

Kid investigators will explore the world of science. Courtesy Photo

This free event gives youth the chance to explore a wide variety of STEM topics in a fun, interactive atmosphere. Co-hosted by New Hampshire 4-H, the Science Bonanza offers three 80-minute workshops across four topic areas: Makers/engineering, plant and animal science, food and nutrition and ecology/environment. Participants will learn about 3D design tools like TinkerCad, how to take care of poultry, cooking with solar ovens and much more.

What can your family expect at the Science Bonanza? Your kids can learn about how to imagine, design and build anything with the maker/engineering workshop. If plant and animals are more interesting, they’ll learn how plants grow, how to keep animals healthy, and the science behind agriculture and livestock. Food and nutrition workshops cover how to keep our bodies and minds healthy and using science to cook food, while ecology/environment sessions reveal how to observe and explore the natural world. Last year, participants made smoothies using a bicycle, test-drove robots, built amazing structures out of everyday materials and more— check out the photos here!

Hard at work on the 4-H National Youth Science Day Project. Courtesy Photo

The Science Bonanza team envisions the day as a place where youth can experience a variety of STEM workshops that are exciting and different from what they might learn in a typical school day. It’s also a chance to learn more about getting involved in 4-H and other STEM Discovery Lab programs.

Along with workshops, there will be demonstrations and information from each New Hampshire county 4-H program, including the STEM Discovery Lab’s 4-H STEM Club, as well as information about upcoming youth programs, FIRST Robotics teams, 4-H projects and more. Registration opens Sept. 25. So mark your calendars and plan on taking a break from the December holiday rush for some STEM-powered family fun.

Sarah Grosvenor is a Field Specialist with UNH Cooperative Extension in Science Literacy and an Affiliate Specialist with the STEM Discovery Lab at UNH. Sarah received her B.S. in wildlife biology and her M.A.T. in middle level science education from the University of Vermont. In her role as a Field Specialist with UNH Cooperative Extension, Sarah is responsible for promoting STEM education in the state of New Hampshire. As an Affiliate Specialist with the UNH STEM Discovery Lab, Sarah is responsible for the STEM Discovery Lab program development for UNH Manchester community and NH youth and adults, through youth programming and professional development. Sarah resides in Concord with her husband, son, and dogs and enjoys being active in the NH outdoors.

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