ST. MARYS — A group of local high school students will be moving on in an annual science competition, as they compete at the district level next month.
Memorial High School senior Keith Frische, sophomores Courtney Steele and Alli Franklin and freshman Ben Tuttle will be heading to Ohio Northern University on March 24 in Ada after moving on from their school science fair held Feb. 8 and 9.
“Our project was ‘Honey, I Shrunk the Kids,’” Franklin said of her and Steele’s project. “We were measuring people in the morning and at night — they shrink during the day, and they gained it all back in the morning.”
Franklin said they discovered people shrink about an inch a day.
“But you gain it all back when you go to sleep,” Steele added.
Franklin noted the two measured their test subjects at 6:30 a.m. and at 9:45 p.m. every day during their project research.
“I’m a volunteer at the zoo in Toledo,” she said of how they came up with the idea for their project. “We were talking about the apes one day — the zookeepers were talking about their height. So, we wanted to see if it happens to humans.”
“I did my project on golf,” Tuttle said. “I tried to find out if the loft height would go up to a higher iron — like from two to three or from three to four — whether it would increase or decrease.”
What he found, Tuttle said, was the distance would increase.
“After several tries with experiments, I found that the loft increased as the number gets higher on the iron,” he said.
Tuttle noted he came up with his project because he enjoys the sport.
“I always like to play golf as a sport whenever I can,” he said, adding that for his project, he had to make sure when he performed his research, he had the club at a set angle.
“So that way when I went to hit, I could know better how high or how far it would go.”
Tuttle noted he set up his experiment inside a barn at his home, which was heated so he could even do his research in the winter.
“We set up a camera on a tripod, so every time the ball was up in the air, it took a picture and I went back and measured the angle,” he said, noting he had a lot of help from his parents.
Tuttle said he enjoyed being a part of the science fair.
“It gives you a sense of pride in your project,” he said. “You learn a lot for your research.”
For the three, this will be their first trip to districts.
“I’m so excited,” Franklin said.
Steele added this level could also help down the road.
“There are a lot of chances for scholarships and savings bonds and money at districts,” she said.
Frische was not available for comment, but science fair adviser Tami Golliday noted Frische’s project “has a lot of potential” at districts. Frische’s project, which was called “Suspended Animation: A Cellular Study,” Golliday said, involved him using liquid nitrogen to freeze nepal ivy. She noted Frische took cross-section photos of the plant before and after it was frozen to measure the cell structure before and after being frozen.
All of his research, Golliday said, took place at Wright Patterson Air Force Base.