Clipboard in hand, Christian Anderson moved from one science fair project to another Friday, paying careful attention to the details included in each presentation as he judged the projects during Prairieville Middle School’s science fair.
All the while, Anderson, a recent LSU graduate and alumnus of Prairieville Middle who is headed to law school, couldn’t forget that his middle school science fair projects weren’t good enough to “make it to the gym” during his days at the school.
Science teacher Patricia Peno said all Prairieville Middle students are required to work on science fair projects and the top projects in each class are displayed in the gym and judged.
Students use writing and math skills to prepare the cardboard displays, she said.
Anderson joined other volunteers Friday as they judged 167 of the top projects from sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders.
Projects dealt with everything from how flowers stay fresh to the effects of chemicals on grass. One student looked into the effects of different liquids on the mass of beans, while another studied how different colored lights affect plant growth.
Anderson said he was impressed with the detail and work from the students.
“You can tell they did these projects themselves,” he said.
Mechanical engineer Kevin Labauve and Anderson were judging the physics entries.
“They’re pretty impressive,” Labauve said.
Horticulturist Jonathon Ducote was judging for his fourth year.
He interviewed each of the finalists in the plants category, giving each tips on how to improve their projects.
“You’ve got to encourage them to build on the projects from year to year,” he said.
The first- and second-place winners in each category will compete at the regional science fair Feb. 24 at LSU.
Peno said the science fair, which also featured an evening event so parents could see the final projects, couldn’t take place each year without the help of community volunteers.
“They take the time to come down here to judge and encourage our students and we can’t thank them enough,” Peno said.
Winners in each category included:
Michael Spencer, first
Justin Morrissey, second
Lily Gros, third
Behavioral and Social Science
Beau Cheveallier, first
Maya Fernbach/Alejandra Diaz, second
Ava Blanchard and Mandy Edmonds, a tie for third.
Rebecca Lilly, first
Alle Andry, second
Hannah Hall, third
Cellular and Molecular Biology
Elizabeth Bourgeois, first
Charlie Dowling, second
Audrey Shank, first
Aubrey Gathright, second
Brennen Bradley and Dinah Blount, tie for third.
Savannah Burd, first
Charlie Beam, second
Braxton Hudnall, third
Cooper Jones, first
Jack Roscher, second
Energy and Transportation
Jack Jones, first
Davis Gilder, second
Bentley Fearheiley, third
Leah Brazen, first
Alan O’Donnell, second
Jacob Delaune, third
Ashley Phillips, first
Grant Weaver, second
Caleb Provencher, third
Medicine and Health
Rylie Buturla, first
Charlie Delaughter, second
Beth Adams, third
Alex Neel, first
Karli Morrison, second
Anna Orihuela, third
Logan Roberts, first
Riley Lawrence, second
Christian Donnelly and Kenyan Tiner, third
Trey Goudeau, first
Decaseaio Plain, second
Kendall Claire Lamont, third.