Lena Jellie Beana Science Matters: Community service project to spark science interests in younger youth

This community service project was developed to engage and expose younger children to science through various hands-on activities. The project’s main goals are to increase children’s appetite for exploration and learn how to have fun conducting simple experiments with household items. The Lena Jellie Beana Science Matters project was designed to meet an educational need throughout the community and entices youth to probe the world of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics (STEAM).

The experiments throughout the community are conducted by a peer-age character who is Lena Jellie Beana and youth volunteers. Often dressed as the book character, Lena Jellie Beana travels throughout California with a mobile lab and instruments conducting science experiments and teaching younger youth (K-6th grade) through practical activities in hopes to spark science interest early in children. The book which features Lena Jellie Beana, supports the continuation of free science activities for younger youth and reinforces science through literature.

Since the project began in 2013, the Science Matters project has expose over 3,600 children from libraries, youth clubs, girls scout groups, STEM events, schools, and at-risk youth organizations to STEAM activities. Additionally, elementary school teachers have begun utilizing the book for students as a supplement to their STEAM curriculum and common core usage.

We all know, science is a vital part of our education, society, and workforce. Clearly, we need strong science knowledge and literacy to remain globally competitive in the 21st century. This service project contributes to early exposure in sciences which can only add to our success for future generations. Besides, science and literature together ROCK!.