NASA and Honeywell Security bring larger than life Physics lesson to Hattiesburg students

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Honeywell Security and NASA visited Hattiesburg High for the 10th anniversary of FMA Live! Forces in Motion tour.

The show combined hip-hop music, dance, larger-than-life demonstrations and audience participation in a way that engaged the students all while teaching the basic principles of physics.

While the United States still ranks as the world's largest supplier of scientists and engineers, that lead is declining according to NASA research.

"This is a hands on experience and is kinda easier to remember because the classroom is sometimes boring," said student and show participant Jerrian Reedy.

Students were able to be in the show by acting out Newton's laws. One volunteer wore a velcro jump suit and ran towards a velcro wall to demonstrate Newton's first law of inertia. Two teachers demonstrated mass versus acceleration in an extreme Sumo wrestling competition, and the last law of reaction involved a teacher being drenched in apple sauce after students threw apples at a target.

According to John James, a performer in the Force in Motion show, the education program hopes to inspire middle school students to learn and enjoy math and science in a compelling, fun and memorable way and perhaps pursue real-life science and engineering careers.

"What we are trying to do is gear it towards this generation so the next generation will be inspired to pursue jobs in science, technology, engineering and math which is our STEM program that we are trying to incorporate in alot of schools, especially middle schools now," said James.

In recent world rankings by the National Science Board, U.S. students' math performance is 26th in the world. Honeywell representatives expressed concern that too few students have the necessary math and science skills to compete for jobs in the 21st century.

The award winning tour will be making its way around the Southeast over the next ten weeks with their next stop in Mobile.

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