Explosive Finish to Knight Lights

Some fizzled, others flew. But all of the bottle rockets strewn across the field behind C.R. Weeks Elementary School represented the fun and learning campers at Knight Lights enjoyed this summer.

The young learners held a launch party to finish off the summer camp. The oldest students made bottle rockets powered by Aquapods, which used water and a pump to trigger a launch. They flew a bit farther than the rockets built by the youngest campers, which used a vinegar-based solution to fill a soda bottle with enough vapor and pressure to make it launch.

All week students from Binghamton University’s School of Engineering helped teach the science behind what would power the rockets. On Thursday those lessons helped propel plastic projectiles into the air.

“I’d say they learned the lesson pretty well,” said Michele Messina, a biomedical engineering student at Binghamton University.

Incoming 3rd graders Colton Stone and Colt Badger worked on a rocket that had an impressive flight. But their vessel didn’t go unscathed.

“The top fell off,” said Stone. “Next time I’ve got to put a lot of tape on it.”

Binghamton University students, 4-H and the Cornell Cooperative Extension spent the summer along with Windsor teachers and high school student mentors teaching young campers STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), literacy, fine arts and physical fitness.

“They loved the STEM and they loved working with the BU kids on the literacy component,” said Knight Lights coordinator Tammy Wanck. “I think the kids went home and had conversations with their parents they wouldn’t otherwise have had.”

The Windsor District and Knight Lights also took time to say thank you to Visions Federal Credit Union, who sponsored the camp this summer.

“This is amazing. We love to see the kids enjoying themselves while going out and learning,” said Visions Community Education Coordinator Maggie Cubic. “We will definitely continue our support for this program.”

Music, face painting and inflatable games also helped the Knight Lights students say goodbye to an eventful summer camp.

Young boy hugging a teacher

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