What’s Involved

img_3442Want to know what’s involved in making YOUR school stand out as a leader in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math)?

We’ll tell you.

We will show you why helping your teachers and students to participate can be a way to bring recognition and positive public relations to your school.

And you will see how you will be fulfilling many of the Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards, all at the same time.

We’ll even help you by providing free professional development, student presentations on the scientific method, or parent-friendly science nights.

What could be easier?

Read on to see how you can become involved!

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Selecting an Option

We know you are wondering: “What’s involved?”

First, you will need to decide just how your school will want to participate. We have many options: from short-term STEM clubs that meet once a week for six to eight weeks … to yearlong class participation.

You can decide whether to:

  • approach just one teacher about starting a club
  • create a grade level team featuring your high-performing science students, or
  • work with your leadership team/school council to encourage school-wide involvement.

Visit “Ways to Participate” https://sarsef.org/schools/fair-directors/ways-to-participate/  to view the variety of options.

Once you choose how your school will participate, the rest is easy! We are happy to help.

If you have never participated before, we recommend that you schedule a free “educational outreach” visit for your teacher, team or school.

At the very least — even if you cannot find a teacher to pilot the projects — we hope that you will let us give a presentation to parents, so they can help their children to enter.

Schedule Free Educational Outreach

We will generate excitement and motivation for your teachers and students to participate, so that you don’t have to. We will then detail all the steps and rules that your teachers and students will need to participate in the Southern Arizona Research, Science and Engineering Fair.

We offer:

  • professional development (one hour) to show your teachers what to do.
  • two classroom presentations or school assemblies (one hour) designed to excite students and give them a complete overview of what to expect.
  • one Parent Science Night to teach students’ parents what we are all about, and explain how they can support their children along the way.

We will introduce the entire program process, and teach the steps of the Scientific Method using an exciting PowerPoint presentation, and colorful handouts.

These services are free, thanks to our generous donors and the SARSEF Foundation.

Go to “Schedule a Free Educational Outreach Visit” https://sarsef.org/schools/administrators/free-educational-outreach/

Selecting Projects for SARSEF

Depending on which option you select, your school may need to schedule a “mini science fair.” We recommend that you ask a teacher to organize this effort; however, some schools ask a key parent to do so.

The person you designate to lead the effort will be called your “Fair Director.” He or she will want to read the section on this website that is designed to help and support Fair Directors.

They will organize and announce a time when all students who have completed a project will bring it to a centrally located place in your school for others to view. The school will then decide which projects will continue on to represent your school at SARSEF.

(Usually, kindergarteners to eighth graders will create about 10 to 15 projects per school. The final number, of course, depends on a variety of factors.)

See “Allocations” to discover just how many you may select and send.

Deciding which projects to send to SARSEF can be a formal process consisting of a full “fair and judging process,” or an informal affair with a few key individuals who are knowledgeable about science, and dedicated to helping students achieve their maximum potential.

Registering for SARSEF

IMPORTANT: The deadline to register projects selected for advancement to the Southern Arizona Research, Science and Engineering Fair is March 10, 2017.

The cost is minimal: just $10 per project. Schools that are Title I, and have absolutely no funds to pay the fee may ask for partial assistance (limited).

Your Fair Director will need to enter the names of the students and their projects into our database at that time, as well as some other necessary information about each student. Here is a sample of the information we will need: Sample Registration for SARSEF

Competition Time

During the week of February 22-26, your Fair Director will print out Fast Check-in forms for each project. These will either go home with the students or be retained by the school, depending on your choice. (See below.)

Whoever transports projects to the Tucson Convention Center on March 2 will be the one who must retain and submit this Fast Check-in form at registration. (Projects may still be taken to the Tucson Convention Center for set up without the form — as long as they were actually registered by the Feb. 20 deadline. It will, however, take longer to complete the registration process.)

Projects can be submitted several ways on March 2, from noon to 8 p.m.:

  • One staff member transports all projects to the Tucson Convention Center.
  • Each student is responsible for bringing his or her own project to the TCC.
  • A combination of parents and staff members bring projects to the TCC.

Send the log books as well!

Student Interviews

Judging Day is March 3. On that day, students will need to come to the Tucson Convention Center for in-person interviews. Please give them an excused absence, since they will be working very hard!

  • For grades six through eight, interviews with judges are OPTIONAL. (They are highly encouraged, though, because students who come down in person are offered awards that others may not qualify for.) Interviews for middle school students are performed on March 3 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
  • For grades 9 through 12, interviews are REQUIRED, and are from 1-4:00 p.m.
  • Elementary school students will not be interviewed.

Celebrate Success!

Read your school’s name in the Arizona Daily Star on Friday morning. Every school that participates with SARSEF will be celebrated.

Please encourage your teachers and ALL students to attend the Future Innovators Night on March 4, from 5:30-8 p.m. It is a free evening of entertainment, with science demonstrations and interactive fun. Thanks to Cox Communications, parking will be free of charge.

To learn if your students have progressed to the March 5 awards ceremony, check the SARSEF website the evening of March 3. Winners’ names — but not their specific award — will be posted online after 8 p.m.

Empowering Southern Arizona's K-12 students to participate in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math

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