Robots Invade Classrooms | Schools

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Robots Invade Classrooms
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Exciting new robotics laboratories have kicked off at Jacksonville Country Day School (JCDS) to enhance its science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) curriculum. The hands-on robotics labs teach kids skills that will be needed to thrive in the 21st century. The labs also help students with teamwork and become engaged with the sciences.

“I think a lot of kids [who] are sitting in classrooms aren’t engaged, because we aren’t stimulating them. If we really engage the kids using various kinds of technology, I think we could be very successful,” Joan Abdallah of the American Association of the Advancement of Science said in a recent article on eSchoolNews.com.

The STEM curriculum at Jacksonville Country Day is based on inquiry learning, in which students engage actively in a situation in order to find its solution. “Inquiry puts students at the center of their learning because it gives them the opportunity to ask questions and become engaged in the act of discovery. As they investigate and review evidence, they construct meaning,” said Shannon Johnson, the science specialist at JCDS.

The robotics labs would not be possible without the support of the school’s Annual Fund, which purchased the Lego Mindstorm NXT sets and Lego WeDo construction sets used in the labs. The Annual Fund also helped cover the expense of Johnson’s robotics trainings at Carnegie Mellon Robotics Academy last summer.

“The robotics program is allowing our students to use STEM and inquiry skills, such as: interpreting 2D and 3D illustrations, building a working model, programming, thinking critically and problem solving,” Johnson said.

Jacksonville Country Day School’s mission is to “prepare students for a healthy and productive lifetime of intellectual exploration, character development, and social responsibility.”
 

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