Creekview Chiefs Learn Hands-On

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After retiring from teaching high school-level chemistry and physics, long-time Carbon School District Employee Roger Swasey took to inspiring a different group of students: the younger classmen at Creekview Elementary.

Returning back to the classroom on Wednesdays and Fridays, Swasey helps instill in the young Chiefs an excitement for accelerated math, hoping to further prepare them for their educational futures.

“The thing that motivates me is my experience in the high school,” he said.

Selecting a number of students from the second, third, fourth and fifth grades based on teacher reccomendations, Swasey then takes advantage of his time with the students to challenge and tutor them throughout their years at the elementary school.

“I love pushing the kids,” Swasey said.

Upon starting the program four years ago, Swasey has taught Creekview Chiefs a variety of subjects including matrices, coding, calculations in multiple bases and, most recently, a real-life example of trigonometry.

A group of fifth-graders from the school gathered outside last Wednesday to measure a light pole outside the school with a homemade tool made from some poster board, a pencil, paper and a calculator.

Using their own inclinometers made as part of the activity, the students measured the angle at which they could observe the top of the pole at various lengths away from the landmark.

Upon taking their measurements, they then used trigonometry to calculate the possible height of the pole. The majority of answers were around 25 feet which, as it turned out, was nearly the exact height of the pole: 26 feet and three inches.

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