Community Day School Love the learning, Live the Values 

Middle School Happenings

MS Science Fair STEM-ulates Minds
Mark Minkus, Head of Intermediate School and Middle School


Albert Einstein once said: “The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge, but imagination.” Well, our 6th-8th graders showed a tremendous amount of knowledge and imagination at the annual CDS Middle School Science Fair. A quick walk around the Ulam K’lalee to view this year’s project boards revealed that these students are really thinking “outside the box” with titles like: “Unlearning False Information in Deep Fake Videos,” “The Effect of pH on Lead Solubility in Water” And “The Development of Virtual Creatures”.

Our future scientists tackled topics like: renewable/clean energy sources, thermodynamics, microbiology, and human memory/recall ability. Each student was interviewed by at least three judges and was required to explain their hypothesis, independent variable, dependent variable, and conclusion. Our Middle Schoolers were confident as they presented their projects, because of the high-quality projects that they produced. If you missed the open Science Fair viewing hours, you can view photos of all of the CDS 2020 Science Fair boards or stop by tomorrow between 7:30-8:30 a.m.

Each grade has a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place finisher, as well as 1-2 honorable mentions. These winning students will then go on to the Pittsburgh Regional Science and Engineering Fair at Carnegie Science Center on March 25. Middle School science teacher Kyle Ison has put forth a monumental effort to make our Science Fair such a huge success. From countless hours of helping students in and out of the classroom to arranging judges and creating rubrics, Ms. Ison is the motor that keeps our Science Fair running smoothly. This year, we also had 13 5th graders who did voluntary Science Fair projects with the help of our LS/IS Science Teacher Jess Burdge. These students will definitely be Science Fair-ready when they are in 6th Grade next year! Thank you also to Learning Innovation Coach Dr. Jackie Barnes for coordinating the judges and helping with several other details. 

In a special honor this year, 8th Grade students Talia G., Akiva W. and Tali H-G. were awarded the Community Day School Young Scientist Award. This award was presented in recognition of superior and consistent Science Fair Achievement to 8th Grade students who won at the school Science Fair during their 6th and 7th Grade years and also attended the Pittsburgh Regional Science and Engineering Fair. We celebrate these young scientists who create, discover, and innovate, and look forward to seeing what they will achieve in the future.

Congratulations to all of the Science Fair participants, and good luck to the winners at regionals!

2020 CDS Middle School Science Fair Winners

8th Grade

1st: Talia G.: The Effect of pH on Lead Solubility in Water
2nd: Yan S.: How The Brain Perceives Time
3rd: Roi L./Amit B.: How Distractions Affect Everyday Life
HM: Leah H.: The Effect of Anti-Fungal on Mold
HM: Samuel R.: Do People Try Harder When They Expect An Immediate Reward?

7th Grade

1st: Sam T.: Unlearning False Information From Deepfake Videos
2nd: Eli K.: The Development of Virtual Creatures
3rd: Phineas H.: Water Purification Comparison: Distillation vs. Iodine
3rd: Rebecca Y.: The Effectiveness of Aquaponics vs. Soil
HM: Ben P.: Using Motors To Test Motor Efficiency With A Bike Generator
HM: Hannah A.: Synesthesia: An Aid to Memorization

6th Grade

1st: Maya G.: Take a Brake! Testing Bicycle Braking Methods to Minimize Brake Overheating
E1st: Maayan B.: The Impact Of Stress And Thoughts On Our Performance
2nd: Milana G.: The Effect of Extracted Bismuth on Plant Growth
3rd: Roni P.: The Effect Of Technology Use On The Vision Of Children
HM: Madeline H.: The Effect of Acidic and Basic Liquids On Lead
HM: Maya A./Rotem A.: Which Drinks Make Ice Melt Faster?

 

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Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science Winners

Congratulations to the 12 CDS Middle School students who presented their Science Fair projects recently at Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science (PJAS) at Duquesne University, including four 1st Place winners.

MS Science Fair STEM-ulates Minds

Our Middle School students (and some enterprising 5th graders) participated in the 2020 CDS Science Fair, with plenty of grit, determination, creative inquiry, scientific knowledge, passion, and communication skills on display for the expert panel of judges.

Field Trips With Impact


Middle School students recently took field trips to the Rauh Jewish Archives at the Heinz History Center and to see an original Alumni Theater Company and JCC Pittsburgh production of "Wears Your Mask?" featuring several CDS alumni. Both experiences continue to spark dialogue and inspire inquiry back in the classroom.

Pixel Art Taking Shape

Pixel art has recently become a popular art form and cultural movement that some CDS middle schoolers are beginning to explore this trimester in a new Exploratory, putting their computer skills and creativity to work. 

Winter Wonderland Dance

TONIGHT! Middle schoolers will enjoy a Winter Wonderland at the Student Council Winter Dance, which is a great opportunity to bond with friends, new and old, while having an awesome time.

Mathletes and Athletes

In CDS Middle School, our mathletes and athletes are getting a great workout this winter! Pre-Algebra "mathletes" recently put their math skills to the test while competing in the Metric Olympics, while basketball season is underway with a full slate of games on the schedule for our student-athletes in the months ahead.

CDS Advisors Win Statewide Student Council Award

Middle School Student Council advisors Ronit Pasternak and Jackie Goldblum were recently named Middle School Advisors of the Year from among 1,500 middle schools in Pennsylvania by the Pennsylvania Association of Student Councils.

8th Grade Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

As part of their World Culture Spanish class and in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, 8th graders completed multimedia biography projects about Latino and Hispanic-American heroes such as Luis Fonsi, Roberto Clemente, and Frida Kahlo. 

CDS Podcast Studio Live

Thanks to a grant from the CDS Parent Association, our school now has its own portable podcasting studio. In a weekly Exploratory, Middle School students are researching, writing, prepping, and practicing to record a 10-15 minute professional-quality show.

Hakuna Matata

Every year, the best-kept secret in the CDS Middle School is the selection of the Spring Musical. Anxious students count down the days, then the hours, and finally the minutes waiting to learn the name of the show. This year's choice didn't disappoint!