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Fairchild Challenge: Challenge One Winners Announced!
Nov 06

Fairchild Challenge: Challenge One Winners Announced!

By Sahar Arbab, High School Program Coordinator, Phipps Science Education and Research

The Fairchild Challenge is now in full swing! Thank you to the many schools that submitted an entry for Challenge #1.

We hope you had as much fun reflecting and writing as we did reading your work. All of the judges agreed that the talent, effort and thoughfulness demonstrated in these entries was outstanding.

Middle School: Nearby Nature Haikus

For the middle school challenge, “Nearby Nature Haiku,” we asked you to spend time outdoors  without the distraction of electronics and then reflect on the experience through a haiku. Teams were then encouraged to compile their poems into a book with releavent, orginal cover art.  Each entry was unique and creative. Keep up the great work!

And the winners are:

First: Woodland Hills Academy

Second: Woodland Hills Intermediate Center

Third: Peters Township Middle School

Special Merit awards go  to: North Hills Middle School (poems by Sophia Yacoviello), Woodland Hills Jr/Sr High School, and The Ellis School.

High School: Your Brain On Nature

For the high school challenge, “Your Brain on Nature,” we asked you to summarize the current findings on the benefits of spending time in nature for the brain and general well-being, and then go experience it for yourself. Thank you for reflecting on your unique experiences through well-written essays!

And the winners are:

First: Max Klemmer, Woodland Hills Jr/Sr High School

Second: Olivia Visnic, Hampton High School

Third: Jovelyn Li, Bishop Carroll Catholic High School

We would like to give a special shout out to our judges from the following organizations: Allegheny CleanWays, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium, Reading is Fundamental Pittsburgh, the Student Conservation Association and Venture Outdoors. Thank you for lending us your expertise!  

About the Fairchild Challenge: Developed by the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Miami, Fl., and adopted by Phipps as a satellite partner in 2008, The Fairchild Challenge offers a menu of interdisciplinary challenges for grades 6 – 8 and grades 9 – 12, attracting students of diverse interests, abilities, talents and backgrounds. The Challenge empowers young people to engage in civic life and encourages them to become energetic and knowledgeable members of their communities.

Photographs taken by Phipps' Science Education and Research staff.