LISBON Gifted to present future at annual fair

The students worked with YSU professors and students to create robots, do physics experiments and study the stars.
LISBON -- Some 150 Columbiana County gifted and talented students will give visitors to Friday's fall fair a glimpse of the future -- at least their version of it.
Coordinators and students of the Columbiana County Educational Service Center invite the public to attend the group's annual fall fair 6 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Columbiana County Career Center.
How would a prominent person of today impact the future? Some students created a mobile to illustrate what would happen if such a person traveled through time to 2030.
What will the junior-senior prom be like in 2030? One group of students will show what they think their children will wear, what kind of music they will listen to, and how they will dance.
Coordinators: The gifted and talented pupils representing all schools in Columbiana County have been studying science and the future since school began, said Vaughn Musser. Musser, Judy Herron and Eleanor Allison are coordinators of CESC's program for gifted and talented students in grades 2-12.
Musser said the CESC has sponsored the fall fair for about 12 years, and with parents of students and other guests in attendance, the event draws nearly 800 people annually.
She said the students have been researching futuristic topics, have worked with students and professors at Youngstown State University, and traveled to West Virginia to participate in a simulated space mission.
Choosing topics: The students chose the topics and the subject areas they wanted to study, and could submit individual or group projects for the fair, she said.
Some students created and programmed robots and will put them to work during the fair. Other students will show a video they created showing their version of a 2030 news broadcast.
At YSU, students worked with engineering students to build and program robots, the same work YSU engineering students are doing, Musser said. Students viewed a special sky show program in the YSU planetarium and worked with physics professors and students, doing polarization filter experiments and making kaleidoscopes.
Also among the fair displays will be a free-standing figure representing how students believe a being from another time and place will appear based on how it will have adapted to its environment.
Students created a comic book to explain a futuristic solution to a current space exploration problem, and a time capsule that includes an audio tape explaining the items to future generations and why they were selected.
Musser said parents of the gifted and talented students will offer food for sale to raise funds for the program.

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