County’s young scientists compete

Published 10:22 am Wednesday, February 11, 2009

CHESAPEAKE — There will never be a high calorie treat called “Frozen Crisco on a Stick.” That’s because the stuff won’t freeze.

That’s what Rachel Blair from Rock Hill Middle School, found out when she conducted her experiments for her entry into this year’s science fair. Blair’s work got a superior rating that allowed her to go onto the county fair that was judged Tuesday.

She took tap water, saltwater, Mountain Dew, sugar water, Crisco and rubbing alcohol and put each in an ice cube tray and checked to see which substance froze the fastest.

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The results: Tap water took 113.3 minutes. Crisco stayed like jello. And for all those recipe lovers after three hours Mountain Dew remained like a snow cone.

There were 132 projects entered from all eight school districts in the county, which were all judged during a special assembly at the Chesapeake Middle School.

Lindsey Hawthorne of Chesapeake found out that there is a reason those remedies are old-fashioned. They just don’t work as well as the new stuff.

She measured the ability of the homespun such as vinegar and honey to kill germs versus what Lysol spray, and hand gel could do. The gel won hands down.

Judge Robert Pleasant said he looks for the creativity of the project and how the students try to draw their hypothesis to a solution.

“They have put a lot of work into these,” Pleasant said.

This was the sixth time for Carrie Yaniko of the Soil and Water Conservation District to judge the county fair. She checks out the student’s idea, whether they did the project themselves and did an actual experiment.

“There are a lot of good projects here,” Yaniko said.

Those who received a superior rating Tuesday will advance to the regionals at Shawnee State University.