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WLES Students Gain Science and Math Skills Through Pumpkin Drop

Students in the fourth and fifth grades at Washington Lands Elementary competed in the school’s 6th annual Pumpkin Drop Thursday, despite a few rain showers.

The idea behind this yearly event is for students to gain knowledge and acquire skills in both math and science while trying to figure out a way to protect their pumpkin’s landing from a 35 foot drop.

Participants were required to build containers within established guidelines such as no altering of pumpkin by freezing or adding chemicals, no wood, metal, PVC pipe or glass and the protective structure could weigh no more than 30 pounds.  Groups consisting of no more than five students worked on their projects during breakfast time and recess.

Judges viewed each pumpkin after the drop to determine which had the least amount of damage. Unfortunately only three of the 16 pumpkins dropped didn’t crack or bust open.

The first pumpkin to go unharmed belonged to the 4th grade team consisting of Deacon Downes, Destin Fisher, Clayton Pyles-Dugas, and Thomas Yeater-Beckman. Fourth graders Greysen Bonar, Logan Huggins, Nathan Hughes, Coltin Myers and Luca Sturgill made up the second group to have their pumpkin be unscathed. The unique contraption made by 5th graders Izabella Brooks, Keira Fincham, Lorelei Williams and Ricki Williams helped their pumpkin be undamaged after Washington Lands Elementary Principal Julie Sturgill tossed it from the lift.

 Overall winners per grade were awarded in the categories of “Most Stable”, “Most Creative” and “Most Environmentally Friendly”.

This hands-on STEM project is hosted each year by the Marshall County Schools Gifted and Enrichment Program.

WARNING: Several pumpkins were harmed during this competition.