By KARINA LOPEZ
5:06 AM EDT, May 11, 2013
BRAWLEY – After six weeks of hard work and critical thinking, a group of sixth graders at Sunflower Elementary School were ready to test their solar-powered boats at the Lions Center pool here Friday morning.
The boats, which were made of various materials including boogie boards, Styrofoam and plastic water bottles, went head-to-head in a competition to see which one would travel the longest distance.
April Moran, who helped build the winning boat, said she was surprised her team’s creation came in first place.
“At first I didn’t think we’d win because only one of our propellers was working so (the boat) wouldn’t go straight,” said April, a 12-year-old sixth grader.
Despite the rocky start, the second propeller on Team Anonymous’ boat began to work and ended up traveling nearly 25 meters.
“The competition was fun,” said April. “It was fun working together with the team and now we get to have fun in the pool.”
April’s teammate Rebecca Moreno, said the group tried a number of different materials and designs before they decided on the winning combination.
“We learned a lot,” Rebecca, a 12-year-old sixth grader said. “We learned about weight and size and some other things we didn’t know about science.”
Brawley City Councilman George Nava was on hand to view the competition and also chose Team Anonymous’ boat for best design.
“They all had great designs,” Nava said. “It was nice to see the students so exited and learning about real-world applications like solar energy.”
The students’ teacher, Ascension Reyes, said he was surprised to see his students so enthused about the project.
“If we didn’t work on the boats they would be sad,” Reyes said. “They were on board from the beginning and purchased a lot of their own materials.”
Staff Writer Karina Lopez can be reached at 760-337-3439 or email@example.com