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Melissa Chesterfield

Students will design a project to visualize how energy moves and will learn to communicate whether their design is releasing or absorbing energy

2021 STEM Scholar
Shelbyville, KY Marnel C. Moorman School

Melissa’s Big Idea: Melissa’s students will design a project to learn about heat transfer, design ways to maximize or minimize heat transfer, and then be able to provide evidence using thermal energy cameras. Students will be provided with materials that can be used for building models of their design. Students will be able to visualize how the energy is moving and communicate whether their design is releasing or absorbing energy. Students will develop skills through the use of science and engineering practices; questioning, planning and carrying out investigations, analyzing data, as well as obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information.  This project will also help students unpack and visualize the abstract yet fundamental physics concept of heat transfer.

Interesting Facts:  Melissa has spent 10 of her 18 years of teaching as an STLP (Student Technology Leadership Program) coach, middle school a drama director, and team leader.

In her own words: “In my experience teaching this concept, I've realized there are many misconceptions around what happens when something cold comes in contact with something warm. Many students are blown away to realize that cold is just the absence of heat. They have a hard time understanding how heat is lost or transfers away from warm things into the cold.”