Elementary Students get Science Lessons at University

SCRANTON — Staff and students at the University of Scranton spent the morning mentoring the younger generation both in and out of the classroom.

A school field trip had fifth graders from McNichols Plaza touring a bigger school campus with some much bigger classmates. Students from the elementary school in south Scranton spent the day at the University of Scranton Monday.

“The enthusiasm is so tremendous at this age, so it helps get them saying, ‘Oh, I can do this. This is fun. This is exciting,'” said biology professor Janice Voltzow.

The focus was on STEAM — science, technology, engineering, art, and math.

In one lesson, the university’s biology professor taught them to look through a microscope.

“They really took the time to look at things. I was really impressed. They made drawings and they shared with each other what they saw.”

For a lot of the students, it was their first time seeing something like this.

“It’s always fun to show them marine organisms because we don’t have a beach in Scranton. Most of these animals came from the Gulf of Mexico, from Florida.”

And it wasn’t just about being inside the classroom. University of Scranton students took the fifth graders around campus to the library, and even the dorm rooms.

“It’s kind of cool. When I get to college, I probably will learn a lot of things,” one fifth grader said.

The campus tour had the students hoping they attend the University of Scranton one day, and the lectures had them thinking science might be their major.

“We do fun stuff in science!”

“I really want to be a scientist because I watch ‘Bill Nye the Science Guy’ too much.”

The university partners with the elementary school in Scranton because of how crucial this age is.

“Fourth grade is the first year they get tested on science subjects. It’s a good time, fourth and fifth grade, to really give them hands-on experience of that,” said Julie Schumacher, University of Scranton.

Besides the biology lesson, students also had a physics and art lesson.