Centerville Students Culminate e-Text Pilot with Impressive STEM Presentations

Dayton, Ohio – Once again, Centerville students from Tower Heights Middle School impressed teachers and special guests from Riverside Research with outstanding STEM presentations, marking the end of another school year and a successful, year-long e-Text pilot program.

Tower Heights, one of several Dayton area schools to participate in the e-Text pilot, adopted two Riverside Research developed e-Texts as curriculum materials for the 2012-2013 academic year. Remote Sensing: A View Through Mechanical Eyes was used during the first semester; Geodesy: The Dynamic Earth was used during the second. Students in Linda Freeman’s 8th grade class developed projects of their own design using these e-Texts as a primary resource. 

“It was exciting to see the creativity with which the students made their projects,” said Ms. Freeman. “They were engaged and eager to move forward with their ideas.”

“The opportunity to participate in the Riverside Research e-text program was exciting and challenging for our gifted middle school learners,” added Lynn Bartlett, the gifted teacher at Tower Heights. “They used background knowledge combined with new research to create projects that stretched their thinking while they made real-life connections to important STEM topics.” 

To culminate the e-Text pilot and conclude their research assignments, Ms. Freeman’s students presented their earth science projects to fellow students, teachers, and local STEM professionals from Riverside Research. In attendance from the company’s Education and Training Directorate were Dr. Andrew Shepherd and Mr. Shane Cuddson.

“It was truly incredible to see our e-Texts used in such innovative ways,” said Dr. Shepherd. “The variety of topics and development of hands-on experiments showed that they were really engaged in earth sciences, as well as the previous remote sensing assignment.”

Student projects covered a wide range of earth science topics, such as geysers, plate tectonics, volcanology, and tsunamis. Casey Graff (pictured above) and Lauren Gaither studied glaciers and hydroelectric power to develop a hydroelectric generator. Jesse Melville studied topography and map making to produce a 3D clay terrain model. John Gossett and Craig Jasin presented an overview of gravity as it relates to orbits using PhET to simulate various orbital types.

“The e-texts gave us a new opportunity to learn about our earth and beyond,” said Gossett and Jasin. “The information was not only new, but interesting, understandable, and presented in an appealing and educational manner. Both of us made the most out of this experience.”