Apache Junction gifted students present innovative projects

By Robyn Gonzales
Posted 1/7/20

Fifth-grade students at Desert Vista Elementary School, 3701 E. Broadway Ave. in Apache Junction, wrapped up 2019 sharing their gifted projects with Robyn Gonzales, educational services curriculum …

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Apache Junction gifted students present innovative projects


Fifth-grade students at Desert Vista Elementary School, 3701 E. Broadway Ave. in Apache Junction, wrapped up 2019 sharing their gifted projects with Robyn Gonzales, educational services curriculum manager.

Mrs. Gonzales said the students demonstrated initiative, imagination and creativity in their projects and presentations.

Below is a summary:

  • Paul Henry created a lava lamp. He used vegetable oil, tonic water and Alka-Seltzer. Paul said you can use regular water for the lava lamp, but through his trials he learned that tonic water provided more dramatic results due to the carbonation. He also discovered that vegetable oil worked better than olive oil because vegetable oil is denser. Another observation the fifth grader discovered through his experimentation process is to omit the lid so the gas can escape. Paul conducted a live demonstration and intrigued observers with the amount of activity the ingredients created.
  • Hunter Wheaton conducted research comparing a healthy lung to a damaged lung. To share all of his newly acquired knowledge he created a PowerPoint presentation to explain what he learned during his research. To support his findings he also created a hands-on model to demonstrate the difference between the two lungs. Hunter placed a balloon inside one of the balloons to restrict the airflow. He and a classmate each blew into a balloon at the same time. The restricted balloon clearly showed an inability to function compared to the healthy, unrestricted lung model.
  • Justus Missick demonstrated the importance of drinking enough water and staying hydrated. He created a very detailed, organized and informative presentation board to share his research. One question he presented was which part of the body has the highest concentration of water --- skin, blood, brain or lungs? The answer was the following: lungs 90%, blood 85%, skin 80% and the brain 75%. Justus’ research showed water is not only important for our physical health it is directly related to human’s mental and emotional health. The message was interesting and concise. Whether you want to be in a better mood, prevent headaches or increase your memory and concentration, the answer is “drink water.”
  • Gabriel Carmony chose to focus on how angles affect range when throwing a football. Gabriel is an athlete and enjoys playing sports. He said he chose this project because he wanted to know how to better himself as an athlete. Throughout his test throws he shared that he was not only able to get answers to his questions but he also began to think of more questions. Moving forward Gabriel shared he is going to work some more to compare what happens when speed is included with different angles and also how throwing a baseball compares to throwing a football.

“Viewing the projects from our gifted students is one of my favorite days of the school year,” said Mrs. Gonzales. “I learn something new every year.”

Registration for the spring semester is underway online at ajusd.org. New students at all AJUSD schools will receive a free T-shirt after their registration is complete. For more information about AJUSD schools call 480-982-1110 or go to ajusd.org.