View From The Hill – (2/19/09)
Super Saturdays – Crime Scene Investigation
Since 1992, almost 14-thousand elementary students have experienced college life early by taking part in Super Saturdays, hosted by WKU’s Center for Gifted Studies. Amy Bingham has more on this enriching opportunity in this week’s View from the Hill.
Music, sciences, foreign languages..you name it, Super Saturdays has a course in it. For four Saturdays during the fall and spring semesters, youngsters get a taste of the future while being challenged in ways they never thought possible.
Science meets detective work in this lab, a class aptly titled Crime Scene Investigation. “We’re working with poisons trying to find out about a crime scene and if it was the same person and same poison with different people who were poisoned in four different states.”
If thin layer chromatography sounds like something you would hear in an upper level college class, it is. “That’s what is pretty amazing, these kids are just fantastic, doing something we teach for the juniors in chemistry and seem to be doing just fine.”
“It’s cool doing all the things college students do and I’m only in elementary school so we seem much older than we really are.”
This is Chad Snyder’s first year teaching a Super Saturday class and he says he took a gamble with the curriculum. “I wanted to give them a challenge but not too challenging. I wasn’t sure if TLC would be sufficient but once you take out the verbage, they catch on really well.”
These fourth and fifth graders have big dreams. The class includes a future astronaut, lawyer and forensic scientist. But for now, they are putting their detective skills to work and putting their college counterparts on notice. “I do expect more out of juniors and seniors now knowing fourth graders can do TLC. They should be able to do it better.”
CSI is one of more than forty classes offered. Super Saturdays wraps up on February 28th. To find out more about other programs the Center for Gifted Studies has to offer, call 270-745-6323. With this week’s View from the Hill, I’m Amy Bingham.