In preparation for the STEM classes they will be leading this semester, Manhattan Day School math and science teachers had a unique opportunity to participate in a two-day hands-on robotics program. The lesson included everything from construction of robots using Lego parts, batteries and sensors, to programming the robots to move using programming software. The goal of this seminar was to introduce innovative and creative ways teachers can engage students in a new kind of hands-on learning across the curriculum.
“Students will be programming their robots based upon authentic real-world problems of the 21st century,” says Associate Principal Judith Melzer. “We hope to develop our students as global leaders and innovators.”
“It was great being able to put ourselves in the students’ shoes, and participate in this hands-on learning experience with colleagues,” says Allison Hus, third and fourth grade teacher. “By doing the project ourselves, we were able to understand it better and learn from our mistakes with this new educational tool.”
“It’s intellectually and visually challenging, innovative and fun,” says Miryam Alter, math teacher.
The professional development session was conducted by leaders of a program called Vista Teach, a company which uses Lego Education Robotics and makes practical teaching applications for teachers.
“I’m really excited to watch the students practice their trial and error skills in learning robotics,” says Shani Beilin, special education teacher. “We look forward to utilizing this training to help the students of MDS in this exciting new wave of science, engineering and mathematics.”