Windham County Skill-A-Thon


By Marc Cournoyer, UConn Extension 4-H Program Coordinator

4-H program coordinator Maryann Fusco-Rollins helps 4-Hers construct scarf marionette puppets using plastic material, beads and string.

 16 4-H members from around Windham County gathered together on Saturday, April 12th to explore STEM through a series of exciting and fun experiential activities.  They participated in three workshops that were facilitated by UConn staff and students.

In the first workshop, 4-H program coordinator Maryann Fusco-Rollins taught participants how to make and operate a scarf marionette.

Members of the UConn Engineering Ambassadors lead 4-Hers in STEM demonstrations

In the second workshop, students from the UConn Engineering Ambassadors led participants through a series of STEM related demonstrations using various household materials such as corn starch and hydro polymers found in diapers.  They also showcased some things that could be done using liquid nitrogen, including freezing a raquetball and operating superconductor magnets along with exploring memory recognition metals.

In the final workshop, members of the UConn collegiate 4-H club led participants in a Jeopardy style game exploring 4-H related trivia called “Are You Smarter than a Collegiate 4-Her?” Kids were split into small teams and had buzzers to signal their readiness to answer questions.  The game show atmosphere was very contagious.

At the end of the event, participants were given the opportunity to share something they learned over the course of the morning that they did not know when they arrived.


Mackenzie and Bridget from the UConn collegiate 4-H club lead 4-H trivia challenge. Noelle, Shannon and Colton soak up water and food coloring using hydro polymers found in baby diapers.