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Empowering the Next Generation: Highlights from Moniteau STEM Day

Updated: May 15

Guest post by Giulia Pucci 

Guillia Pucci

Before STEM Day, I was scrambling for ideas. How could I impress these students? What would wow them and inspire them to explore STEM further? I was introduced to so much technology this semester, but I had no idea what would suit these students best. That’s when I discovered the Sphero robots. These little spherical robots work similarly to an RC car. Connect the Sphero to the iPad by Bluetooth, and you’re ready to go! Even deeper than the ability to drive the Sphero around like a toy car is the ability to program. The Sphero EDU app allows students to practice click-and-drag programming, getting them used to the logical style associated with programming.

This was perfect. My sister and I drew up many maps, mazes, and race car tracks to bring, and I was thrilled to impact the students at Moniteau School District. My initial plan was to let the fifth and sixth-grade students program and let the younger students drive the Sphero using the app’s joystick feature. Both groups would use my mazes and racetracks as models. After seeing these students’ hunger for technology and innovation, I let them all play. I let them take ownership of their learning and drive the Spheros through the tracks of their choice, and I couldn’t have been happier with the result. Quenching the thirst of students who are eager to learn is a very rewarding task. My experience at Dassa McKinney Elementary School during Moniteau STEM Day exceeded my expectations. All I brought were a few sheets of paper with mazes drawn on them and a couple of Sphero robots. I only had 13 minutes with each group of students, but in that short time, I knew I had made an impact on many young minds. Moniteau STEM Day was a day to remember, not only for myself as a teacher but for these students who are starting to think about their futures as learners.

Giulia Pucci

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