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Science Saturday: What started out as one dad’s visit to E.L. Bouie Theme School for Career Day has turned into a program that gets more kids excited about science.

Science Saturdays Ignites Student Passion

Updated Wed April 1, 2015

Science Saturday: What started out as one dad’s visit to E.L. Bouie Theme School for Career Day has turned into a program that gets more kids excited about science.

Georgia-Pacific is helping to “bubble up” a passion for science for students in Lithonia, Georgia.

What started out as one dad’s visit to E.L. Bouie Theme School for Career Day has turned into a program that gets more kids excited about science. GP chemist and father Dexter Johnson turned that Career Day visit into “Science Saturdays,” a monthly program that lets students enjoy interactive learning through experiments that aren't part of their everyday curriculum.

“Science Saturday is an awesome asset to our instructional program,” said Linda Priester, principal of Bouie Theme School. “It’s an excellent way to help our children understand what it’s like to learn from active participation.”

One Saturday a month, GP team members and parents volunteer to work with students on various science projects, such as building water pressure bottle rockets. Parent volunteer Tony Robinson believes the effort works because “it exposes kids to things they would not otherwise see, it provides a safe environment for them to experiment, and it teaches them about safety as well.”

“We’re giving our students extra exposure to the different sides of science – it’s hands-on, and the kids are having a great time,” adds PTA President Marnaka Kilcrease.

The initiative has already had a positive impact on students’ performance. “Both of my kids’ science grades have improved and they look forward to Science Saturday,” Robinson explains. “In fact, they wake me on Saturday mornings, excited to get to the school and learn!”

GP plans to continue supporting Science Saturday long into the future. And no one will be happier about that than Johnson. “We’re helping keep a love for science alive in young people as they begin to think about their futures. Our hope is that programs like this one will inspire and cultivate future engineers, chemists, scientists and educators for generations to come.”

Watch this video to see Science Saturday in action!

Johnson and colleagues from GP’s Decatur, Georgia, lab took part in the 2015 Atlanta Science Festival, a week-long celebration of local science and technology held March 21-28 at Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta. As part of the festival, GP hosted a paper making exhibition at the Exploration Expo. 

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