HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (Dec. 20, 2013) - Building structures using principles of science may not be everyone's idea of a good time. But building edible structures? That's fun for all! Or at least that's the hope with the first-ever "Project Candy Land" competition being held Saturday, Jan. 11, from 3 to 6 p.m. in the Engineering Building of The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH).
"Project Candy Land is about kids building structures out of edible materials," explains Niam Abeysiriwardena, who has been helping his brother - and creator of the concept - Anish with the details. "The goal is to learn practical skills about measurement, volume, mass, stable structures, foods, architecture, engineering, and more while having fun doing it!"
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Registrants, who are limited to children between 6 and 18 years of age, must bring their 3-D structure made of 100% edible candy materials to the event for evaluation by a panel of judges. Prizes will be awarded based on scoring that takes into consideration stability, creativity, detail, density, and presentation.
Assisting with the event are Dr. Krishnan Chittur, professor of chemical and materials engineering at UAH and faculty advisor, and Dr. Angela Anandappa, parent of Niam and Anish Abeysiriwardena. Their hope is that it will inspire gifted students well before they're ready to apply to college.
"It's good to encourage their interests as early as possible," says Dr. Anandappa. "And this kind of competition, which incorporates physics, chemistry, and math, is a perfect way to do it."