Mar 27, 2015

Grand opening of the MakersFactory STEAMSpace!

The MakersFactory STEAMSpace has officially opened at Monroe Middle School!  Our newest STEAM community partnership will provide training in the use of advanced technology tools, including 3D Modeling and Printing, MinecraftEdu, Game Design, Computer Programming, Electronics and Robotics.   They will also be working with the teachers at Monroe to implement and design lessons that teach Common Core Standards, 21st Century Skills, and Next Generation Science Standards.  This week, the Monroe teachers came in for an introductory STEAMSpace kick-off meeting!  They got to try out some of the new technologies and signed up for times to plan an integrated STEAM lesson with the MakersFactory instructors and to bring their classes in.  
Some of the Monroe students have been working on 3D modeling and printing during a special lunch club and after-school class.  7th grader, Teddy Faravelli said, “3D modeling is cool and exciting.  It’s universal and let’s you build in real life whatever you want. It makes school more fun and awesome!”  After spring vacation, there will be PD opportunities and after-school classes that will be open to all of our schools.  We are so excited to expand STEAM in CUSD with our partnership with the MakersFactory!

Mar 7, 2015

Google CS-First Coding Clubs

Google recently released their free coding program, CS-First, for 4th - 8th graders.  When you register for the program at http://www.cs-first.com/ you can request that all of the student materials, lesson plans, and headphones be sent to your classroom.  There are currently seven modules to choose from: Game Design, Music & Sound, Fashion & Design, Storytelling, Art, Friends, and Social Media.

In our district, a few teachers at Campbell Middle School have been using the materials during their STEAM workshops.  Katie Herr, has been using the Game Design lessons with her 6th grade coding lunch club at Monroe Middle School.  Her students have created a racing game, a maze game, a platform game, an escape game, and a launcher game.  In the next few weeks, they will also create a falling objects game and a cave surfing game.