Sonoma County Office of Education

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McKinley Elementary School takes top honors at Science Olympiad

04/19/2016 -

Science Olympiad 16

A team from McKinley Elementary School received the highest score and top honors at the April 16th Sonoma County Science Olympiad held at Lawrence Jones Middle School in Rohnert Park. McKinley’s group, which named themselves Team Black, includes the following students from the following grades:

Everett Abercrombie, 4th Mira Bruce-Low, 5th
Ashlyn Byous, 4th
Josh Byous, 6th
Loomis Glashan, 4th
Ursula Hongisto, 5th
Idan Kashani, 6th
Emma Mali, 4th
Owen Pontoriero, 6th
Maya Scholnick, 4th
Lorelei Wright, 5th

McKinley’s coach, Matthew DeLucia-Zeltzer, holds deep pride in his team and their efforts: "Every week, the kids persevered at practice, challenging themselves to see their events in new ways and striving to improve their personal best,” he said. “They supported each other in the frustrating times and laughed a lot. It is wonderful that they get to see their hard work pay off. Huge thanks to our incredible parent volunteers, to the phenomenal Rotary Club of Petaluma who provided material and support at practices, and to the organizers of this competition who have created an environment in which you can look around and see kids smiling ear-to-ear all day long as they return from their events."

Team member and sixth grade student Idan Kashani spoke about what the event meant to him: "Science Olympiad is a great opportunity to have fun practicing science and developing skills for the future. It is as if you become one with science."

Overall, twenty-four teams of students in grades four to six participated in the Olympiad. McKinley earned the most points in a series of 14 events related to the disciplines of life, earth, and physical science. Students applied their knowledge and skills of environmental science, aerodynamic principles, load limit, physics, mathematical computation, the scientific method, engineering, and design to the various events. In preparation for this one-day competition, each team diligently prepares and practices throughout the school year, with the steadfast support of their teacher and/or parent coach(es).

This year’s Science Olympiad drew 330 student competitors, along with 60 volunteer judges who helped facilitate. Twenty-five of the judges were from Dr. Jessica Hobson’s child development class at Sonoma State University.

The grand finale was the Naked Egg Drop event, which required student teams to design and construct an egg catcher from copy paper and masking tape to catch a raw egg falling from increasing heights. Several teams tied for first place: Dunham Team 2, Gravenstein, La Tercera Eagles, Old Adobe Experts and Presentation Patriots Team 1. The winning catch was dropped from 8 ft. 11 in.

Schools/teams in the Science Olympiad and final place standings
1 McKinley Elementary School - Black
2 Old Adobe Charter School - Experts
3 Waugh (Corona Creek and Meadow School) - Wizards
4 McKinley Elementary School - Red
4 Presentation School - Patriots 1
5 Luther Burbank Elementary School - Bengals
6 San Miguel Elementary School - Zebras
7 Gravenstein Elementary School
8 San Miguel Elementary School - Leopards
9 Old Adobe Charter School - Roadrunners
10 John B. Riebli Elementary School - Riebli Forces
11 McNear Elementary School - Blue
11 Monte Vista Elementary School - Mountain Lions
12 Marguerite Hahn Elementary School - Team 1
12 Morrice Schaefer Charter School - Bears
13 Dunham Elementary School - Team 2
14 La Tercera Elementary School - Eagles
15 Presentation School - Patriots 2
16 Evergreen Elementary School - Team 1
17 Dunham Elementary School - Team 1
17 Evergreen Elementary School - Team 2
17 Marguerite Hahn Elementary School - Team 2
17 Wilson Elementary School - Wildcats