Midway Heights Fifth Graders Launch Weather Balloon
COLUMBIA - Fifth graders at Midway Heights released their weather balloon Tuesday morning.
The students wrote a letter for a $1000 grant for science education through Show Me Nature group for a weather station and a weather balloon. Midway Heights elementary has a fifth grade outdoor classroom.
Midway Heights fifth graders have been paired with an MU phD fellow this school year to become more educated and hands on in the science field. PhD fellow, Jonathan Morrand, helped Sheri Stewart's fifth grade class with the grant information and the process of building the weather balloon before the release.
Morrand said the fellowship program is a good opportunity for local schools to bring better science education into the classroom.
"The Show Me Nature program brings science education into the classroom of local schools. The fifth grade class I work with has been focusing on weather this year and I have been able to bring in some of my research into the classroom and some fun experiments for the kids in order to make their education and classroom experience fun and hands on," said Morrand.
The weather balloon that the students released today had a cell phone inside of it with a smartphone app called "Find My Friends" that will allow the class to track the balloon and retrieve it after it lands.
The balloon should have been in the air for one to seven hours depending on the weather conditions. The fifth graders at Midway Elementary thought the weather on Tuesday was perfect for the launch.
The students will collect data from the weather station and the weather balloon and then present it at a MU science symposium on April 27.
Morrand and Stewart hope that fellowship programs like this program will continue because it excites students interest in science.