Area school sees "tornado in a box" demonstration

Students at a local elementary school are learning about how tornadoes are formed.

Posted: Apr 12, 2018 10:34 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Students at a local elementary school are learning about how tornadoes are formed.

It was part of a fun outdoor science class at Dixie Bee Elementary School. News 10 witnessed students learning about energy by seeing a tornado form in a small space. Students say learning about science in this way is sometimes more beneficial than reading it in a book.


"Very educational and there are some things that I didn't know which is surprising because I'm very very smart" 5th grader Joseph Robertson says.

The demonstration was part of a traveling science program organized by Duke Energy and IUPUI. Organizers say it's important to get young children learning about energy and how it can impact the world around them like creating severe weather.

"It's very relevant at any age or at any grade. The further you go up the more disconnected kids get from science so you want to keep them interested from a young age and a young grade" Sam Ansaldi with IUPUI says.

Part of the lesson was getting kids thinking about how to harness energy from nature. Students were told about different ways to get valuable resources like electricity.

"Non-traditional energy sources instead of say...harnessing solar energy from the sun or wind energy from your gentle breeze, we are looking at the concept of harnessing energy from natural disasters like tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunamis," Ansaldi says.

No scientist has been able to capture the raw energy of a tornado ...yet.

"I might. That would be cool" Joseph says.

There will be another demonstration at Dixie Bee tomorrow. The program is free and interested teachers can reach out to schedule a visit.

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