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Student scientists share their discoveries at Hebrew Academy Science Fair

STEAM Day mentor Dr. Susan Sharfstein and eighth-grader Joshua Marx, who researched and demonstrated how video games impact the brain.

ALBANY – In February, 150 attended the Hebrew Academy of the Capital District (HACD) annual STEAM Day which was combined with a Tu B’Shevat celebration.

Every grade in the school contributed. The youngest grades led interactive activities about the human senses and displayed exhibits about landforms and geology. Students in grades four through eight presented their original research and experiments on topics ranging from how heart rate is affected by exercise to differences in selective listening among children and adults.

The exhibitions at the science fair were the result of weeks of work, as students learned how to research a question, conduct experiments, and analyze data. Sixth-grader Ellie Reznik studied how taste buds function. “I loved learning how to research a new topic,” she said.

Several scientists from the community—including former HACD parents Barry Pollack, Dr. Andy Salem, Dr. Susan Sharfstein, Dr. Joseph Shiang, and Dr. Ira Zackon, and HACD alumna Alix Zackon—were  invited to the event and gave each student feedback about his or her work.

Alongside their science projects, students also displayed their recent classwork on the seven agricultural species of ancient Israel and on blessings related to the human body.

Afterwards, the crowd enjoyed a fruit buffet to note Tu B’Shevat, the Jewish new year for the trees. Tree-themed artwork was displayed.

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