San Marcos,
26
February
2015

Festival Fuels Interest in Science, Innovation

By Christine Vaughan

Over 100 interactive demonstrations and hands-on science activities including rocket launches, build-a-robot stations, a magic show, animal encounters and scientist chats will engage thousands of attendees on Saturday, March 14 at the annual science festival Super STEM Saturday, held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at CSUSM. Free and open to the public, Super STEM Saturday kicks off the weeklong San Diego Festival of Science and Engineering, the largest celebration of innovation and science education in Southern California.

Sponsored by ViaSat, Northrop Grumman and Palomar Health, Super STEM Saturday is designed to expose and engage kids of all ages and their families to the diverse and exciting fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, known as the STEM disciplines. The brainchild of The Classical Academies and held in partnership with CSUSM, Super STEM Saturday has grown into a popular North County event that draws over 5,000 science enthusiasts each year to the university campus.

To a mathematician's delight, this year’s festival lands on Pi Day. Pi is the mathematical symbol representing the ratio of a circumference of a circle to its diameter, which is approximately 3.1415. Worldwide, March 14 is recognized as Pi Day. In honor of the special occasion and in celebration of mathematics, Super STEM Saturday festivities will provide an opportunity for guests to enjoy a slice of pie, a customary tradition among math fanatics.

Highlights of this year’s festival include:

  • Solar Telescopes: View the surface of the sun through special filtered solar telescopes
  • Build-a-Robot: Build your own robot using recycled materials
  • The World of Plasma: Enter the Plasma Chamber and watch illuminating demonstrations
  • Rockets: Build and launch your own rocket
  • Bones: Get up-close and touch real fossils
  • Native Garden: Plant native seeds in CSUSM's Ethnobotany Garden
  • Electrify Me: Discover the power of static electricity in a hair-raising and hands-on way
  • Scientist Chats: Meet local scientists and hear about their fascinating research
  • Explore the World of Play: Little ones can visit the Children’s Museum booth to explore STEM activities designed for toddlers and preschoolers
  • Math Bowl: Participate and show off your math skills in a fast-paced math competition
  • Rubik's Cube Tournament: Cheer on and be amazed as you watch Rubik's athletes complete the cube…some in under a minute! Meet the competitors and learn first-hand how you too can solve the cube.

For more information about Super STEM Saturday, visit www.csusm.edu/superstem.

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Christine Vaughan
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