Friday, December 18, 2009

She Did It!

She did it!  Miss Olivia placed 2nd in her school’s 5th Grade Science Fair and to say Loverman and I are pleased, as punch would be an understatement.

It’s mandatory for all 5th grade students to participate in the school’s science fair.  The kids are provided with an outline detailing the 10-week process and to be honest I was intimated when I first reviewed it. Loverman and I have artistic spirits.  Science isn’t really our thing, but being that this project represented a huge part of Olivia’s science grade, we knew we’d have to dive in with our girl to support her through this process.

Olivia decided to stick close to home with her experiment.  She wanted to learn if dog saliva prohibited bacteria growth better than cat saliva. She swabbed the mouth of our dog, Zoey, and our cat, Max; mixed each sample with a bit of Yannick’s toe-jam and after just two days, we witnessed the explosive growth of bacteria in the Petri dish with the cat saliva.  Let’s just say, you really don’t want to be licked by a cat. Olivia tracked the changes in the Petri dishes daily and we took lots of photos.  Once finished with tracking the results, Olivia had to create a display board that illustrated her process and the results of the experiment. 

The display was due on Mon., Dec. 7 and the science fair was scheduled for Weds., Dec. 9th.  Olivia meticulously wrapped her display in a huge trash bag before heading to school on its due date.  I felt good when I saw her confidently walk into school with the project and I couldn’t wait to hear how it measured up to the other projects.  When Olivia got into the car after school, I was bursting at the seams in anticipation.  She seemed pretty nonchalant about how her experiment stacked up to her friends’ projects, in fact, she was genuinely impressed by the efforts of most of her classmates.  It looked like I’d have to wait until Wednesday’s science fair to see for myself.  When we finally got the science fair, I saw quite a few of interesting projects, but Olivia’s definitely stood out and was one of the better-executed projects.  We learned later that evening that the winners of the science fair wouldn’t be announced for a few days, but I was very confident she’d get a good grade.

At the end of last week, I began to think the school would never announce a winner and pretty much put it out of my mind.  It wasn’t until Olivia came beaming into my office on Wednesday that I thought maybe she had received word about the science fair.  She proudly presented me with a bright red ribbon emblazoned with 2nd Place Winner.  Whohooo!  Olivia gave me the details about how the winners were announced and how hearing her name being called caught her by total surprise.  She even mentioned how some of fellow students were “haters” and tried to undermine her win by making snide remarks. 

Whatever!  There’s absolutely no shame in her game… Miss Olivia worked hard and is deserving of this win.  It’s not just that she placed, but it’s also great she’s being recognized for putting forth a lot of effort and doing her best, especially after a few disappointments this summer and hearing me and Loverman go on and on about how winning isn’t important all the time--- this affirmation of her efforts will go a long way in bolstering her self-confidence and let’s be honest… it’s so much more fun to win at least some of the time!


Angella Lister said...

Congrats to Ms. Olivia! And to her parents for their wonderful backup. Ah, I miss science fair days...Enjoy this sweet accomplishment.

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finefroghair said...

I can not think of anything that is truly more important than educating our children and creating positive self esteem not the false kind where everyone wins a prize but the kind that is earned and will thus be replicated through the rest of her life Kudos to both you and your daughter