Science Olympiad Inspires Students’ Interest in STEAM

Science Olympiad Inspires Students’ Interest in STEAM
For the sixth consecutive year, Nativity Prep’s middle school team competed in the 2016 regional Science Olympiad competition held at Carlsbad High School in February. The Science Olympiad is a nationally organized competition in biology, chemistry, physics, earth science, and engineering, encouraging students to participate in more than 20 events. This year, the Nativity Prep middle school team of 15 competed in the following events:
  • Bottle Rockets: Students designed and constructed a water and air- pressure-powered rocket that carried an egg safely through its flight and landing.
  • Air Trajectory: Requires students to design and build a device that launches a ping pong ball at a target by converting a falling mass into air pressure.
  • Elastic Launch Glider: Students built a glider (weighing ten [10] grams or less) with the goal of keeping it in the air the longest.
  • Crime Busters: Students were asked to apply their understanding of forensics to investigate a hypothetical crime scene.
  • Bridges: Students built a miniature wood bridge to sustain a maximum amount of weight.
  • Food Science: Students had to create different food products and complete a test on nutrition.
  • Write It, Do It: Students had to write procedures to create a complex object and have their partner create that object based on the instructions.
  • Reach for the Stars: Students completed a challenging test on astronomy.
9cac9915-ad80-42f5-b3d3-1451da8b73f0The Olympiad competitions challenge students to collaborate, communicate, think critically, and create. “The event is a great opportunity for our students to experience what high-quality science looks like,” said Elijah Bonde, Principal of Nativity Prep and assistant coach to the NPA Science Olympiad team. “We are limited in our ability to provide the same level of coaching as other schools,” adds Bonde, “but our students truly enjoy getting to compete with nearly 2,000 other students from the greater San Diego region.” This year, NPA students performed quite well in the competition, under the leadership of Ms. Summer Wilkinson, Nativity Prep’s head Olympiad coach and science teacher. Wilkinson and her team of hardworking students were aided by Ms. Charlotte Coe, assistant Olympiad coach and teacher at Nativity Prep, and by a number of parents and mentors. “I love to see how the Science Olympiad ignites students’ passion for science,” commented Wilkinson. “I hope that it inspires them to consider the wide range of sciences in their careers.”
If you have a passion for science and would like help NPA students prepare for next year’s Science Olympiad beginning in October, please contact Elijah Bonde, Principal, by email at