Children were focused on Friday making either a robot follow in a straight line or making Kinex parts move at Edward Bell Career Technical Center. A showcase for the Tallapoosa County robotics gifted program was held where students got to show their parents what they have been working on since March.
Tallapoosa County gifted teacher Karen Coleman said students in the program were identified in second grade from Dadeville, Horseshoe Bend and Reeltown elementary schools. The students learned with Kinex and Botley pieces before moving on to LEGOs robots and learning programming.
We applaud the Tallapoosa County Schools for starting this program and getting children interested in science at a young age.
Teaching students robotics can show them there’s a lot you can do with math and science skills. While math and science can be seen as hard or boring for children it can also be given a fun and practical use such as programming robots.
It’s especially important to get young females into the STEM field. According to the National Science Foundation, women made up 28 percent of all workers in the science and engineering field as of 2010.
Coleman told parents of daughters to push them in the field.
“I’ve got girls who won’t take credit for what they know,” Coleman said. “Push them hard in that science and math field. There’s not enough and I’ve got some smart girls.”
The program was great not only for learning math and science but also social skills. Coleman said students had to learn to follow instructions, be patient and learn how to work together. Children learn teamwork and other skills in sports and music classes, and getting it in robotics is another avenue to strengthen them.
We’re glad the students learned a lot this semester and hope they return to advance their skills for the upcoming year.