Family Science Night at Mountain View Elementary was a great success! Our school has offered two wonderful after school programs this year that work on STEM projects — TAG and Junior Lego Club. These two programs came together with the Mountain View PTO (Parent Teacher Organization) to create a science experience for everyone on March 12.
Our Lego Club is a six-week program for students in grades two, three and four. This year we had 22 students who worked hard one day a week to create a working robot out of Legos. The students first worked with a partner following directions to build a Lego Education Simple Machine. This gave the students a chance to get to know their partners and it was helpful for the volunteers to see the skill level of each student.
The following week, the students began the process of building a Lego Robotic. Each group chose a Lego Education WeDo plan. They spent five weeks working together to build amazing creations. Each Lego Robotic could have been programmed with a computer. However, due to technical difficulties with equipment, only one group was able to use the Lego Education WeDo programing software to program the moves and sounds their robotic was able to do. All other groups were still able to demonstrate the movements of their robotics with Lego battery packs attached to their creations.
Once the Lego Education WeDo robotic had been built and tested, the students had an opportunity to build a car without any plans to follow. There were eight boys who took the challenge and built their own cars to race during Science Night. Some cars were small, while others had interesting engineering ideas. Each project gave students the opportunity to use the Engineering Design Process.
TAG (Tigers Achieving Goals), MVS’ Lottery for Education grant recipient, has shared robotics with Niota’s and Riceville’s after school programs. Mountain View demonstrated the Cubelits, Ozobots and Dash. There are also Lego Robotics that we plan to use in our after school program. After the demonstration, TAG students helped parents and other students “play” with the robotics.
After the Junior Lego Club and TAG demonstrated their robotics, all students and family members enjoyed “playing” with some of the robots and looking closer at the Lego Robotics to see how they work. The PTO had also set up several interactive STEM stations for families to experiment with.
We love to watch our students “light up!”