Dear Parents, Current High School Students, and Alumni,
I hope that you are having a great day.
One reason our middle and high school Science Olympiad teams are very successful is because our parents and teachers coach it together in great harmony. It is our goal to achieve the same community effort for our elementary science olympiad team but we need your help. Don’t hesitate! You too can make a difference in the lives of our precious students.
Science Olympiad has always had a special place in the hearts of the FSA Community. Some newcomers may not know the story behind it so I would like to share it with you. Everything started with our first Science Olympiad teacher’s vision for a winning FSA Team. Mr. Bilal (Bill) Yaldiz saw potential and worked hard to realize his vision. At the time, I was a computer teacher at FSA and personally, along with many other community members, witnessed the passion and dedication of Mr. Yaldiz .
I remember a short road trip from Norcross to Alpharetta with Mr. Yaldiz and all he talked about was how great his students were, how much they could improve, and so on. I immediately knew that I had met someone very special. When someone speaks from the heart with such dedication you recognize it.
At that time, our Academic Team studies were not as organized as they are now. Many things were new to us and we were all learning. For many of us, it seemed like a very big task when Mr. Yaldiz first introduced Science Olympiad to our school because there are 23 Science Olympiad events, including academic and building events. In the beginning, Mr. Yaldiz lead the effort alone, but soon other science teachers and parent coaches joined him in coaching. There were not many coaches, but they were certainly a very dedicated group.
Mr. Yaldiz and the team went above and beyond. Mr. Yaldiz then introduced morning studies. Every morning students arrived early to school and studied for their Science Olympiad events until their first class began. He then introduced weekend studies. Soon there were school sleepovers, trips, away camps, picnics, and so on. Students were even coming to school on Sundays to work on their events. It created an incredible team spirit.
Fourteen years ago, around this time, Mr. Yaldiz, once again, scheduled a Sunday study session for his Science Olympiad students. He was on his way to the school to work with them when he had a traffic accident and passed away. He was only 28 years old. His lovely wife, students, parents, and faculty were all in shock, but they stood united in their efforts to work hard to realize the vision for which he had sacrificed so much.
Although it was very difficult for everyone, the next Saturday, our team attended the Regional Science Olympiad Competition and won 1st place. It was the first time our team had ever won first place in a Science Olympiad tournament. I still remember the Science Olympiad Director’s announcement that day. He said, “Last Sunday, these students lost their ScienceOlympiad head coach in a tragic traffic accident and today they won first place as a team.” There were tears in everyone’s eyes. Mr. Yaldiz worked so hard, but never got to see FSA win first place as a team. Who knows…maybe he did see. I hope so.
However, the story did not end there. It was actually just the beginning. A beginning that inspired all of us at FSA. After that day, our school performed better and better, each and every year at Science Olympiad Tournaments and Competitions; Ultimately climbing to 21st place in the nation just last year. Considering there are about 7,000 teams in the nation, you can see how far we have come as a community.
We now have other heroes leading our Science Olympiad Team such as Mrs. Walsh, Mrs. Stathos, Mr. Parlak, Mrs. Elitok, Mrs. Koca, Mrs. Sanders, Mr. Sanders, Mr. Kersey, Mrs. Fernandez, Mr. Nash, Mrs. Kuppuswamy, Mrs. Jayaraman, Mrs. Bhatt, Mrs. Jordon, Mrs. Butler, Mrs. Sierzego, Mrs. Bedore, Mrs. Byrapuneni, Mrs. Polaty, Mrs. Detchprohm, Mrs. Gardner, and Mr. Copa. Mr. Yaldiz’s legacy lives on through our new teacher and parent coaches.
I always believed that volunteers do not necessarily have the time, but that they have the heart to make it happen. So, once again thank you to all of our amazing volunteers and coaches. We appreciate your sacrifices for our kids.
Because of our continued growth, we need volunteers to work with our elementary science olympiad team students. If you have some sort of expertise in one of the below elementary science olympiad events, please contact Mrs. Elitok telitok@fultonscienceac ademy.org. She will help you schedule a time to work with our wonderful elementary science olympiad students. Thank you for all you do!
Backyard Biologist – In 2018, the focus will be on trees, plants, and birds. Teams will be required to identify organisms from a provided list and know about the habitat and conditions required for growth of the organisms.
Barge Building – Each team will construct a barge of aluminum foil that can support a cargo. They will predict the amount of cargo the barge can hold and then load cargo until the barge takes on water.
Data Crunchers – Teams will demonstrate their understanding of metric measurement by estimating and measuring length (meter), mass (gram), fluid volume (liter), angles, and temperature (Celsius). Teams should also be able to create and interpret data tables, bar graphs, line graphs, pie charts, and pictographs and make basic calculations that include time, money, fractions and percentage.
Deep Blue Sea – This event will test students’ knowledge about oceanography. (Ocean Flora, Physical Features, Ocean vessels and equipment used in diving)
Don’t Bug Me – Each team is expected to distinguish insects from non-insect, identify various body parts, characteristics, habitats, ecological significance, life-cycles, and major classes and orders of arthropods.
Mystery Architecture – They will be given a bag of materials to build a freestanding tower as high as they can. The tower should be constructed to support a tennis ball at its top.
Paper Rockets – The team will have 20 minutes to build a rocker and practice launching it. This will be followed by the official launching. The winner will be the team closest to the target.
No Bones About It – Students will identify bones and pictures of bones are stations throughout the room. They will also be required to answer questions found on cards at the stations pertaining to bones. Only the Scientific Names of the bones will be accepted as correct.
Rock Hound – Students will identify various rocks and minerals and describe their characteristics.
Simple Machines – Students will be asked to identify, use, and answer questions about simple machines.
Starry Starry Night – This event tests student’s knowledge of astronomy in two parts. Identify celestial objects and answer questions about important astronomical facts.
What’s the Matter – Teams will be assessed on their knowledge of the physical properties of matter and the behavior of solids, liquids, and gases before and after they undergo changes or interactions.
Straw Egg Drop – Each pair of students will make a device of straws and masking tape, supplied on-site by the event supervisor, to hold a large, raw egg. The device containing the egg will be dropped from a fixed height to a target.
Straw Towers – Each team is attempting to build the strongest straw tower.
Which Way is North? – The team will attempt to navigate themselves around a state road map.
The 24 Game – Participants use problem solving skills combined with their knowledge of mathematics to make the number 24 using the 4 numbers provided on the game cards.
Water Rockets – Students will build a rocket from a 2-liter plastic bottle and launch for a maximum time aloft.