The 4 day camps focused on Science,
Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics. Kids learned how to program
small robots to find their way out of a maze. Six-year old Riley Lallithan of
Huntington took part in the camp.
“I learned that only a bebot can move if
you turn it off and turn it back on to make it go,” Lallithan said.
She along with the other children
learned about the ins and outs of robotics and how they work. Brea Wiles is the
Studio Educator at the Early Education STEM
center at Marshall.
“Really what we wanted to do this week
was give them an introduction to robotics and just the wiring and programming,
so we did that through the hello robot, which is the bebot and they’ve been
able to learn how to program that bebot to go forward, backward, to the left
and to the right just by pushing buttons on top of the bebot,” Wiles said.
Throughout the week kids get the chance
to play with… of course robots, but also iPads and good old fashioned pencil
and paper as they drew what the insides of the robot looked like. Chief
Professional Development Officer for the Harless Center, Holly Moore said the
camp fits into the program perfectly.
“Well the Harless Center is dedicated to
STEM education and that’s science,
technology engineering and math and we’ve recently gone toward STEAM, which is
science, technology, engineering, arts and math and so the program is really to
get young children thinking about science and math,” Moore said.
Moore said it’s about making the
children think about what goes into making the robots behave like they do.
“The whole idea is that they start to
think about, ok I’m going to program this robot to do different things, what is
the engineering behind it, what things do I need to do to make the robot go
left, or go straight and also looking at what’s inside that robot that makes
that happen when I push this button,” Moore said.
Moore said by hosting the four week-long
camp every summer, Marshall hopes to spark children to have an early interest in
learning everything from art to science.
“Children are curious about what’s
happening, we want them to ask questions, we want them to take time and observe
what’s happening in the world as far as science goes, mathematics and how those
things come together and so we really want to build that curiosity so they have
that love of lifelong learning,” Moore said.
Cassie Miller is the parent of
five-year-old Fletcher. She said she enrolled him in the camp to give him the
opportunity to do things he might not do otherwise.
“They’re experimenting with things they
don’t get to at home, such as wires and electricity and at home we teach them
it’s a little dangerous to play with that and here they’re learning the basic
concepts of creating something that they really only see on TV or movies, which
are robots,” Miller said.
The final week of camp starts today and
runs through Thursday.