The 36th annual science fair for Calaveras County students was one of the many events to go virtual this year.

In March, participants in grades 4-12 submitted their presentation templates and project videos through Google classroom. Volunteer judges accessed the files from their homes and judged the projects according to the rubric.

“We had so many great projects this year,” Debbie Strand, county Office of Education Coordinator of Communication and Student Events said in a press release. “The virtual science fair was a great success, we had students want to participate which was the best part.”

Seventh-grader at Christian Family Learning Center Reese Roeder won the grand prize for the second year in a row with her life science project, “Seagrass as a Carbon Sink?” Roeder was unable to advance to the California Science and Engineering Fair last year due to the COVID-19 shutdown, but this year, the event will be 100% virtual.

Three local students from grades six through 12 also qualified to compete in the state’s fair in April: sixth-grader Adrien Wood from Mountain Oaks with “What Should My Plants Drink?”; seventh-grader Cecilia O’Geen from Mountain Oaks with “The Beauty in Fish Poop: Using Aquaponics vs. Traditional Soil Farming”; and sixth-grader Tobias Siegler from Christian Family Learning Center with “Microorganisms to the Extreme.”

Other winners in their category were sixth-grader Rebecca Dittman from Christian Family Learning Center, who won in the Behavioral Science category with her project “Imposter,” and fifth-grader Wesley Mann, also from Christian Family Learning Center, who won in the Physical Science category with “Kaboom!”

“I am so happy we were able to coordinate a virtual science fair and provide this opportunity for Calaveras students,” county Superintendent of Schools Scott Nanik said.

Project videos are available for viewing and a complete list of the winners is located on the Calaveras County Office of Education website at www.ccoe.k12.ca.us/sciencefair.

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