Imagine being one of 14 teenagers in the country to be selected to help design a website that presents scientific concepts to other kids their age. This is exactly what happened when Ashwin Datta, a freshman at Glencoe High School in Hillsboro, Oregon won the opportunity to help design the website named Sparticl, developed by the Twin Cities Public Television (St, Paul, MN) with funding from the 3M company.
Richard Hudson is the director of science production at PBS stations in the Minneapolis area. Hudson said his team developed Sparticl, which launched in 2013, because when students search the Web for science topics that interest them, they are often immediately confronted with dense and technical pages, too complex for them to understand. Sparticl, he said, gives students a one-stop resource for quality science materials appropriate for the age level.
Ashwin has a considerable list of accomplishments under his belt, despite his young age. He is currently trying to get a patent for his invention of a special set of Christmas lights he built. The lights only need to be installed once, and then a remote control can change their color to match the various celebrations during the year. Ashwin also likes to design computer games, golf, play the piano and ski at Mount Hood. He’s also taking flying lessons.
Sparticl is a great site for ACS ChemClub members. It delivers science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) on the web. A team of experts hand-selected videos, games, hands-on activities, and articles that are age-appropriate, accurate, safe, and engaging. And best of all, teenagers like Ashwin were part of developing it all!