R-7 secondary students participating in Battle of the Brains

October 16, 2013 

Elaine Brewer of Burns and McDonnell and Frank Vovk, R-7 science curriculum specialist, work with students at Summit Lakes Middle School.


A select number of secondary classes in the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District have entered the competition, Battle of the Brains, sponsored by Science City at Union Station and Burns and McDonnell.

The competition challenges students to design an exhibit which focuses on human health/biomedical, sustainability or transportation.

The winning teams for secondary schools receive a $50,000 grant and the chance to work with engineers to design the next great exhibit for Kansas City’s Science Center.

Entries are submitted as a paper, a sketch, a commercial and as an electronic document with entries relying heavily on research, technology skills and collaboration in order to submit a competitive proposal.

Lee’s Summit R-7 schools are using this competition to teach the curriculum in such a way as to prepare students for the challenges of tomorrow.

On Sept. 26, Elaine Brewer, a construction manager for Burns and McDonnell spoke to students participating in the competition about her job and how she uses STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) skills in her job as well high school and college prep for STEM jobs.

She is also sharing information about Battle of the Brains and Burns and McDonnell and answering questions about their projects.

Lee’s Summit R-7 teachers participating with their classrooms are Niki Evert, Tamara Davidson, Gina Johnson, Shannon Boland and Jenna Nelson, all science teachers at Summit Lakes Middle School. Students in the teachers’ advanced science classes are participating.

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