Each week, every child will get to experience Robotics, computer programming, tinkering, circuitry and other STEM activities. However, each group of GEMS will have a week long concentration with extended projects in one of these areas. Below is a schedule for the concentrations by group and week. Each concentration segment will be 1:20 in length. The mini STEM activities will be 45 minutes each.
|Week 1||3D design and printing using TinkerCad online programs|
|Week 2||Computer Science: SCRATCH Game Design and programming|
|Week 3||Crazy Contraptions|
|Week 4||Caine’s Arcade|
|Week 5||Robotics (Lego EV3 & Finch Robots|
|Rocketry: The Engineering Design Process
|Session 1||1:40 to 2:45 Concentration Activity – see weekly schedule above|
|Session 2||2:45 – 3:25 Alternate STEM Activity – see descriptions below|
3D Design using TinkerCad: TinkerCad is one of the premiere 3D design programs available to teach the design process to both the beginner and experienced designer. Our campers will learn, step by step , how to use TinkerCad to create a unique 3D printed object. Once the TinkerCad basics are learned we encourage our campers to continue to experiment and release their creativity.
Computer Science: Campers will explore coding using age appropriate programs such Scratch and Scratch Jr. Experienced campers will have the opportunity to learn and apply skills using Minecraft and Java programming languages. At each level the campers will develop an understanding of programming languages, and apply this knowledge to create their own interactive art, animated stories and video games. Along the way, campers will use logic and critical thinking to explore different variables that are found in most other programming languages. No prior experience is necessary.
An exciting week of creative exploration as campers learn the importance of creative thinking, design, engineering, iterative testing, and using materials and tools to create Crazy Contraptions “Crazy Contraptions” is a thought provoking activity that engages students in the design and construction of exciting and innovative Rube Goldberg style mechanisms. This week long activity will focus on the conceptualization, understanding and application of simple and complex machines. Campers will work in small groups to build, test, modify and complete interactive machines. The week will end with a demonstration and competition that will reward campers for their innovative design and creative solutions. Time permitting campers will be introduced to Keva Plank Contraptions to expand the skills they developed working with Crazy Contraptions.
Based on the NASA Adventures In Rocket Science program Campers will learn the history of rocketry and the science that goes into the design, propulsion and flight of early and modern rockets. Campers will build and test several simple machines that will demonstrate the basic concepts employed in rocketry. This week long activity will culminate in the design, construction and launching of bottle rockets.
Robotics: Campers will use build and program LEGO EV3 robots at different, age appropriate levels. Campers will have fun building robots and finding out how to command them. Campers will have the opportunity to extend their robotics capabilities by meeting challenges such as beating your opponent at Sumo or pushing water bottles out of a ring. This class will introduce programming concepts such as repeat loops and if/then statements, and sensor use will also be taught.
In this activity, Campers explore physics, game development, and engineering through the collaborative creation of cardboard arcade games. Caine’s Arcade is now a nationwide movement and is celebrated every October. It reinforces the concept of design thinking and truly incorporates 21st Century skills. Over multiple sessions, students work in small groups to brainstorm and design unique arcade games. Using feedback provided Teachers and fellow campers, Arcade builders will refine their designs and construct their games. After completion, students test and compare their games through playing each other’s creations.
Weekly Alternative STEM Activities: Campers will get to participate in most of these activities each week.
Programming – mini programming lessons and challenges
Robotics – work as a team to build and programs robots
Maker space – a blend of science and technology activities
Tech Art – Art project that involve conductive tape and thread, batteries, motors and LEDs.