Schools Rule: Concord’s program to get students into STEM
CONCORD, Mich. (WILX) - The next generation of children is growing up more tech-savy than ever and the Concord School District is making sure their students are programming the next generation of robots.
This week, they finally got to showcase their hard work at their Robotics, Science and STEM Expo Wednesday. The school started the program to help get children into STEM and it’s been a great success.
“We really felt like it was imperative to expose our kids to the concepts inside robotics, STEM and projects that lead the way so they can really begin to think differently and think creatively,” said superintendent Becky Hutchinson.
For fifth-grader Emma Norris, that’s exactly what the program has allowed her to do.
“I love building with Legos,” Emma said. “I love programming. I love making complete things.”
She’s always loved Lego blocks and STEM, but when she got the opportunity to combine the two -- she couldn’t pass it up.
“She always kind of played with Legos at home but last year she really decided that this was what she wanted to do,” said her mother, Brelan Norris. “She wanted to learn to build and to program.”
Wednesday, she got to show off all her hard work.
“We build robots and we use the tablet, which is kind of like are computer for programming, except we use tablets,” Emma said. “And we build the robots and then we have to complete missions.”
Students like Emma are being introduced to programming early on, which sets them up for success in STEM, but her mom said it’s given her other skills too.
“It’s really helped her come out of her shell. It’s really allowed her to learn to interact on a bigger scale and learn to have self confidence and what her abilities are,” Brelan Norris said. “It’s a fantastic program and I’m thankful for it.”
Emma hopes to join the high school robotics team -- and that’s exactly the enthusiasm the district hopes to continue.
“Our hope is the more kids that we’re able to get involved in the programming the more that it grows,” Hutchinson said.
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