JAMS Science Magnet November Updates

Dear Science Magnet Community,

The 6th grade trip to Catalina Island Marine Institute was full of excitement and learning for our students, thank you for your support! Next up is the 7th grade Yosemite trip and 8th grade AstroCamp trip.

Yosemite Gear Donations:  In preparation for the upcoming 7th Grade Yosemite Trip, we are seeking donations of needed items for our Loan-Out.  Please drop off used warm jackets, gloves, boots, and pants to Ms. Guirguis’s classroom, Room 72, between Nov. 7 and Nov. 29. Yosemite meeting & gear exchange is Tuesday, November 29, 6:30pm.

Seminar Highlight - JAMS HAM RADIO

Did you know that JAMS Science Magnet has its own radio station and Ham Radio seminar? Have you ever noticed the 110 foot antenna tower near the science quad? Here's the story.

Randy Powell became an amateur radio operator, or 'ham' in 1966. In 1997, his son was in the JAMS Science Magnet headed by Linda Cady. The 110 foot antenna tower next to Mrs. Cady's classroom got his attention (height is everything for an effective shortwave antenna). The tower had been installed in 1970 by KCRW (89.9 FM) whose studio and transmitter were in what is now room 70, Ms Jurewicz's classroom. KCRW moved their studio to Santa Monica College and their transmitter and antenna to the Hollywood Hills in 1979, so they abandoned the tower. It was up for grabs!

When Randy's son was attending JAMS, a ham radio transceiver was donated to the school and Mrs. Cady showed Randy the "new" radio. Randy suggested that they set up an amateur radio station noting that it could expand the Science Magnet's curriculum in the areas of physics, chemistry, geography, and electronics. A generous Marina del Rey ham donated the funds to pay for a "yagi" antenna and its installation on top of that 110' tower. So in 1998 the antenna was installed and the Magnet had a 1st class shortwave radio station to use as a teaching tool -- JAMS was 'on-the-air.' 

Since then, approximately 75 students per year have been introduced to ham radio. They have talked to other stations as far away as Antarctica, missionaries in remote jungles in the Philippines and picturesque villages in Portugal.  They've had QSO's (conversations) with nearly every US state and Canadian province, and over 60 countries. Bi-lingual students have even had conversations in languages other than English (with a retired Japanese ham in Tokyo and a Russian ham in Vladivostok). 

In 2012 a fellow ham Dennis Payne joined Randy. Dennis's wife and two children are JAMS alumnae (Dennis went to Lincoln). Having two instructors allows more students to participate in the 2 part, 3-hour seminar. Last year the school got its own callsign: KK6QXI.

Please stop by Rm. 70 any Wednesday after school and see what's happening 'on-the-air'!

Order forms have been distributed to the students! Last year, the Magnet's See's Candy sales brought in $5,000 which helped pay for science magnet classroom supplies such as our awesome telescope, lego robotic kits and more. The deadline is the end of November. Wondering what to get for your office mates or someone who has everything? These perfect gifts will be distributed to students right before the holiday break! E-mail Chair, melissaht@verizon.net with questions. 

11/28/2016 - Science Magnet Board Meeting (open to all)
11/29/2016 - 7th Grade

Yosemite Trip Meeting, 6:30pm in the Cafeteria. Students attendance mandatory as well.

12/1/2016 - 8th Grade
AstroCamp Trip Parent Meeting, 6:30-7:30pm in the Cafeteria 

STILL SEEKING those skilled in MakerSpace/Labs and Coding to lead a seminar. Please e-mail Board@JAMSScienceMagnet.org if you know of someone.


Derek is the creative director at ISM [iz-uh m], a creative services agency based in Santa Monica, CA.