TribLIVE

| Neighborhoods

 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Cool chemistry: Programs at Springdale library take inspiration from late science professor

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Cool Chemistry

What: Science program for kids in grades 3 to 6

When: 6-7 p.m. every Tuesday from April 22-May 27

Cost: Free

Where: Springdale Public Library, 331 School St., Springdale

Details or to register: 724-274-9729

Daily Photo Galleries

AlleKiski Valley Photo Galleries

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Sunday, April 20, 2014, 4:54 p.m.
 

A mother's memory is making good things happen at the Springdale Public Library.

That's because the Geraldine Yanni Science Club — started by her husband to memorialize his wife, a Springdale native — is bringing programs from the Carnegie Science Center to the kids in and around the borough.

The library has hosted one already, in January. The next six-week program will kick off 6 p.m. April 22 and run through May 27. All programs are held from 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesdays.

Called “Cool Chemistry,” the series is designed to share science with third- through sixth-grade students. The program is free and open to the public.

Heidi Emrick, who heads up tween services at the library, is excited about the new program.

“It's a very hands-on class,” she says, “the kids will actually get to do experiments.”

Each week, there will be one experiment, designed to show kids that chemistry is all around them, according to Marilyn Fitzsimmons, education coordinator for the science center's “Science on the Road” programs.

“One week, we'll be exploring gases, basically, dry ice; another week, we'll solve a problem of water contamination in a town,” she says.

Other sessions will cover conductors of electricity, glow-in-the-dark materials, temperature and even how to make slime.

“They think chemicals will be dangerous, but, really, everything we work with on a daily basis is chemical,” she says. “They're chemists when they're baking with their parents, when they brush their teeth — we're just showing them the chemistry that's all around them.”

For Wexford resident Jim Yanni, who started a fund at the library in memory of his wife, Geraldine, the program is a way to give back and encourage a love of science, like that which his wife instilled in their own children.

“It's all education, and it goes back to my wife and her life and teaching biology,” he says.

Geraldine Yanni taught biology and other science-related classes at the Community College of Allegheny County, the University of Pittsburgh and LaRoche College.

When she passed away suddenly in September 2012, the family wanted to do something in honor of the Springdale High School graduate.

They requested that donations be made to the library in her honor. The library received an outpouring of support, according to Jim Yanni.

Because of the generous efforts, they were able to start the Geraldine Yanni Science Club. Bringing the Science on the Road programs to the library have been the club's first efforts.

“We're honored that so many people have contributed hard-earned money to the club and the library has done a fantastic job getting this running,” says Mark C. Yanni, one of Jim and Geraldine Yanni's sons.

He will be on hand at the first session — which, coincidentally, he points out — falls on Earth Day. He is looking forward to sharing a little about the woman who inspired the library's science programming.

He remembers how, once, his mother sent him to show-and-tell with a sheep's brain in formaldehyde.

“Time and time again, my mom just pulled off pranks like that,” he says. “It just made you fascinated with her love of the natural world, and it was fascinating.”

“That's the lady behind the science club, and we just hope that kids can have fun in learning,” he says. “That's the big point of this.”

The library is still accepting donations in memory of Geraldine Yanni. The money goes toward science programming for children. Contributions should be made to the Geraldine Yanni Science Club, Springdale Public Library, 331 School St., Springdale, PA 15144.

Julie E. Martin is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read AlleKiski Valley

  1. Rainy summer delays paving projects in New Kensington
  2. Armstrong inmate escapee charged with murdering family matriarch
  3. Winfield Community Park restroom project stalls over high contractor bids
  4. Captured Armstrong jail escapee Crissman’s criminal history
  5. New Kensington-Arnold committee discusses ways to combat bullying
  6. Winfield supervisors OK natural gas-drilling regulations
  7. High-rise medical visits aimed at curbing 911 calls in New Kensington
  8. Judge lets New Kensington Ten Commandments monument stand
  9. South Butler superintendent heads home for Mohawk job
  10. Child pornography videos tied to Winfield man
  11. ATI workers retire early to ensure pension