Girls learn about engineering, math, science at GEMS Camp
By Liz Dadson

Science & Technology/Women Today

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Girls and their leaders at the GEMS Science Camp, set up their sundials to see if they tell the time accurately, Tuesday morning at the Tiverton Lions Hall

GEMS Camp leader Rafia Waraich (C) and volunteer helper Preeti Fernandes (R) outline to Sheetal Gill, 10, of Tiverton and the rest of the group how to make a sundial Tuesday morning

Volunteer helper Laurie Glover (C) of Bruce Power shows her group how to make the sundial

Astro-science was the focus of the day when the Girls in Engineering, Math, Science (GEMS) Camp got under way Tuesday morning at the Tiverton Lions Hall.

The week-long event is sponsored by Bruce Power and Women in Nuclear (WiN) Bruce, giving 25 girls, ages eight to 12, the opportunity to study subjects they might not otherwise consider.

The camp began Monday with Kitchen Science and the girls studied candy chromatography and cookie mining.

Tuesday, was the study of the Phases of the Moon and What Time Is It?

Wednesday was Brain Power Day which included Brain Charades and Test Your Senses.

Thursday was the study of the World Around Us, featuring Who Polluted the Water? and Clean Up Your Mess.

And Friday was Engineering Divas, featuring Which Way the Wind Blows? and Save the Bridge.

Each day ran from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with a separate morning activity and creative crafts. There was also a soccer tournament held right after lunch, and Friday there was an open house for family and friends to see what the girls had accomplished over the week.

Rafia Waraich ran this week's camp, with the help of several Bruce Power volunteers and four friends from Mississauga: Amreen Babugi who is taking science at the University of Waterloo, Melani Joseph who is studying life science at the University of Toronto, Zainab Waraich who is taking biomedical science at the University of Western Ontario, and Preeti Fernandes who is taking a Master's degree in materials engineering at McMaster University.

Tuesday, the girls were studying the Phases of the Moon and were conducting an experiment to see what each stage looks like. They also built their own sundials and then took them outside to test their accuracy.

Cheryl Cottrill, who organizes the GEMS Camps, said there was such a demand to attend the event that a second camp is being held July 23-27. 

That one will study Kitchen Science (Sweet Density  Bottle and Chemistry Scavenger Hunt), Matha-Artist (Math and Art = X and Art of Origami), Eye Wonder (Seeing is Believing and Eye Like Mine), World Around Us (Food For Thought), and Designer Divas (RoboGirl and RoboRave).

Emma Woodhall (L), 9, of Kincardine cuts out the sundial

Madelynn Griffiths, 12, of Port Elgin works on her sundial

Kayla Heinisch (L), 12, of Ripley, and Taylor Ferguson, 12, of Port Elgin test their sundials

Deanie Harding, 11, of Toronto, discovers that her sundial is reading the correct time; she was at the GEMS Camp with her cousin, Georgia Tanner, of Kincardine

Rebecca Turi, 12, of Port Elgin figures out how to put together the sundial

Georgia Tanner (R), 9, of Kincardine, signs the T-shirt of Rylee Pawlikowski, 9, of Tiverton, at the GEMS Camp

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Thursday, July 12, 2012