Rock It: Science

Rock It: Science is a cooperative project between Girls Rock! Seattle, a music education, life skills, and self-esteem program for girls ages 9-16, and the Pacific Science Center. The project teaches girls the underlying physics of sound and music as well as audio engineering concepts, organized within in the context of writing music and creative expression. Pacific Science Center will teach the girls a proven and established curriculum that covers the physics of sound, electricity and magnetism and electronics. Girls Rock! Seattle participants will apply the content knowledge gained through this program to understand the key physical and engineering concepts behind how their instruments work, and then use this experience first-hand as they create and experiment with new sounds.

Project Contact Info
First Name: 
Teresa
Last Name: 
Demel
Phone: 
206-443-3639
Project Details
Role and Contributions: 
Girls Rock! Seattle is a one week program that provides a venue, staff, and students for classes about music writing, performance and production, as well as audio engineering.
Project Goals: 
The goals of Rock It: Science are to harness girls' creativity and love for music to: 1) help them gain knowledge in Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) that have direct linkages to their personal interests, 2) teach them STEM content knowledge by exploring sound and equipment, 3) build upon these experiences to foster a positive attitude toward science and engineering, 4) increase awareness of careers in STEM disciplines, with an emphasis on fields linked to music production and engineering, acoustics and physics and 5) improve overall self-confidence through musical performance.
Project Design Plans: 
Each girl who attends Girls Rock! Seattle’s one week program will participate in two Rock It: Science hour-long workshops. Through in-depth hands-on activities, girls will learn basic physical properties of sound and how it influences instrument design and functionality. The exploratory nature of the class will encourage girls to trust their observations, building self-esteem. By connecting physics to music, we will establish links between scientific disciplines and creative self-expression. Rigorous program evaluation will assess how much this program influences girls’ self perception, as well as understanding of and interest in STEM disciplines. It will also determine girls’ interest in related after school workshops and guide the design of subsequent Rock It: Science iterations.
Activities and Methods: 
Through activities offered within the context of rock music, girls will learn the relationship between sound, vibration, magnetism, and electronics. These concepts will set the stage for subsequent, afterschool programs on associated topics such as audio filters and modulation. Using physics kits, and musical instruments and equipment, girls will learn the basic principles of sound production and modification, such as vibration and the media through which sound propagates. The girls will use this knowledge to alter their music, i.e. generate feedback or use guitar pickups as vocal microphones. Evaluation will determine girls’ interest in learning more sophisticated aspects of audio engineering, such as creating filters (guitar pedals) or altering frequencies in recording software.
Project Budget
Amount requested:
Amount of matching funds:
Organization providing matching funds:
ItemDescriptionCost
MicrophonesTake apart microphones to see what is inside.50.00
Copper wire - 1 rollMagnetism activity (copper is not magnetic, and is used in instruments)10.00
Nickel Guitar Strings - 1 setMagnetism activity - nickel is magnetic and used in electric guitar strings10.00
buzzersUsed with electromagnetic generators50.00
Small magnetsMagnetism activity20.00
guitarstwo guitars to take apart and show innards, to study magnets200.00
2 sets of sound stripsStrips that, when rubbed, say "Science Is Fun"50.00
Iron filings and containersUsed to locate magnets in electronic instruments20.00
Evaluator20 hours500.00
Matching AmountMatching funds from partners3260.00
Budget comments:
Population Served
Grades Served: 
K-5
6-8
9-12
Genders Served: 
Female
Project Objectives
Who is your activity primarily targeted towards?: 
K-12 Students
What age are you targeting?: 
11-14, 15-18
What participant sub-groups (if any) is your activity targeting?: 
Females
Which of the following types of objectives does your activity focus on achieving?: 
STEM degree seeking/enabling behaviors; knowledge of course requirements/academic prep for careers in STEM
What specifically do you want participants to be able to do after they participate in the activity?: 
Influence participants' course taking activities in order to be ready for STEM degrees.
Who is your activity primarily targeted towards?: 
K-12 Students
What age are you targeting?: 
6-10, 11-14, 15-18
What participant sub-groups (if any) is your activity targeting?: 
Females
Which of the following types of objectives does your activity focus on achieving?: 
Attitudes towards STEM careers and studying STEM
What specifically do you want participants to be able to do after they participate in the activity?: 
Participants will express that one of the many STEM careers available is appealing to them.
Project Evaluation
Assessment Activities: 
Pre and post participant surveys or questionnaires
Collecting Information: 
Yes