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Jefferson County Fire Department takes ladder truck to Buff Elementary to assist in annual event.

HOLLY M. GILL - Jefferson County Fire Department personnel gather up eggs from third-grade students at Buff Elementary on May 31, for the annual egg drop. Volunteer Onasis Adame waits on top of the ladder for the eggs.
Third-grade classes at Buff Elementary School held their fifth annual egg drop May 31, with assistance from the Jefferson County Fire Department.

Fire department personnel set up their ladder truck in the parking lot on the north side of the school for the third year, using a rope and pulley system to raise containers full of students' carefully packaged eggs up the ladder.

When he received a container, fire department volunteer Onasis Adame counted down with students before dropping each of the eggs.

"We do this activity as part of a STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) research project," explained teacher Davinie Fiero. "Students learn the scientific process and build containers to protect a raw egg being dropped from 40 feet off the ground."

HOLLY M. GILL - Third-grader Merrick Towers, 9, displays his egg from a successful drop May 31, during Buff Elementary's annual third-grade egg drop. With assistance from the Jefferson County Fire Department and its ladder truck, students were able to have their packaged eggs dropped from about 40 feet off the ground. A total of 37 out of 57 survived the fall.
"This is a fun and engaging tradition for students at Buff," she said. "My favorite thing is when they tell me what their older brother or sister did when they made their container. I love that it has become a tradition at our school!"

As part of the project, third-grade teachers Hayyley Campbell and Fiero gather a variety of recycling materials, which they make available to their students, who must create their containers at school.

"This keeps things fair, with all students having access to the same materials," said Fiero. "This year, between the two third-grade classes, we had 37 of 57 survive without a crack. That's the best success rate we've had yet."

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