Cell Signaling Technology Grant
This is the 8th consecutive year that 6-12 Dept. Chairperson John Kotch has written and received grants (each grant ranges between $3000-$5000) from Cell Signaling Technologies, an applied systems biology research company based in Danvers. The science department now has a complete classroom set of iPads for our students with many apps and programs that are used for all of the classes; 2 classroom sets of Student Response Systems; numerous interface GLX probeware devices and a variety of sensors such as: carbon dioxide; dissolved oxygen; temperature; pH; motion; force; velocity; colorimeter, etc. to be used in laboratory investigations. This grant allowed us to purchase DNA Electrophoresis Instructional Lab Sets. These will provide our students with state of the art lab experiences. One of our grants was co-written by our Biology teacher Alison Dolan and John Kotch and was for $3385 to fund the purchase of mini-PCR machines with learning kits. These kits will allow our AP Biology and other life science students to work with state-of-the-art technology for lab investigations at the highest level. We also purchased Mini-PCR machines that were used for lab investigations with our AP Biology students as they were using this cutting-edge technology for the first time.
Another grant allowed us to secure more cutting edge technology kits in the form of Biofuel Enzyme Reactions Kits; ELISA Immuno Explorer Kits to to enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays; PV92 92 PCR Informatics Kits for forensics investigations and and a Crime Scene Investigating Kit using DNA Electrophoresis.
Forensics Comparison Microscope
This grant, wrtitten by Deb Clapp ( Anatomy-Physiology and Forensics teacher) was awarded by the HW Edfund. Thank you Edfund! The approximately $3000 grant allows our forensics students to use this state of the art comparison microscope for analysis of hair and fiber evidence, pollen and soil evidence, and bullet shell casing evidence to help them in their “who dunnit” evaluations. Also, paint chips and botanical evidence could be evaluated in the future! This is the same type of equipment utilized by State Crime Labs and offers a unique opportunity for our students as they can now utilize the same equipment as crime specialists.
Science From Scientists For Miles River Science Students!
We are excited to announce that we will be bringing in “Science from Scientists” next year (2015-16) to our Miles River School science classes for all grades 6th-8th, thanks to a $15,000 Edfund grant written by John Kotch, the 6-12 Science and Engineering Curriculum Leader. This organization brings in real-world scientists on an every-other-week basis for hands-on, laboratory activities in a wide-range of science topics that are aligned with both MA State Frameworks and Next Generation Science Standards. Our goal is, as SfS states, to improve the “Aptitude and Attitude” of our young students toward STEM education by exposing our students to a broader range of materials and lessons.
For more information please see the SfS website at: http://www.sciencefromscientists.org
CNC Plasma Cutter
A CNC plasma cutter is a state-of-the-art computer numerical controlled robot, which moves an arm that holds a plasma torch on the X,Y, and Z-axis. As the arm moves, it cuts designated shapes or designs out of metal (typically steel*).
The purpose of bringing this setup into the school is to give the students more real-world learning opportunities through the use of a technology that is used by professionals in fields such as engineering, technology, art, and more.
See a plasma cutter in action:
3-D Printer and Computer Lab
Tate Shippen (Math Dept.) and Jeff Walsh (Engineering teacher) secured a $20,000 plus grant for the purchase of several 3D printers and a set of powerful laptops plus 3D Graphing software to drive them.
As, Tony Walsh, the Math Dept. Chair stated,
"This is a revolutionary addition to the school’s engineering capability, truly now our students will be able to boldly go where no-one has gone before.
Tate and Jeff have shown great leadership, vision, management skills and tenacity to bring this about, thank you both!"
Exo Lab Microscope Camera
The Science Department has added to last year's grant from the Hamilton-Wenham Edfund to purchase 7 Exo Lab microscope cameras by now including 15 more Exo cameras for a classroom set of 22. These devices attach directly to the microscope and then project the image onto an iPad for better viewing, editing and photographing. Students have have used these to create dissection guides, produce lab reports with annotated micrographs and in student collaboration projects during microscopic lab work.