Daniel Boone Elementary Hosts “Dream Big STEAM Challenge Day”

Posted on 03/20/2019
Daniel Boone fifth graders participate in cup stacking challenge

“One more cup! We can do one more cup!” Those words echoed across the fifth grade classroom at Daniel Boone Elementary as students worked on a cup stacking challenge during Dream Big STEAM Challenge Day. The students worked together in teams to build the tallest tower they could out of solo cups. The exciting competition between students was just one of many Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM) activities planned for the day.

Students participate in an activity during Dream Big STEAM Challenge DayThe students participated in a variety of engineering challenges based on everyday problems. They also built structures that would be appropriate for a big city scene and others that could withstand an earthquake. The fifth graders utilized their coding skills in another activity by commanding and instructing a “human” robot. “I think it’s important for students to be learning about STEAM because it is our future,” said instructional para and event organizer Kate Eberhard. “We’re basing our life around things we need to fix in our world, and I think it is important that we also learn about problem-solving and working collaboratively with groups.”

Daniel Boone fifth graders participate in cup stacking challengeThe STEAM day also taught the students a valuable lesson in perseverance. While participating in the cup stacking challenge, the towers would occasionally fall, and students would have to start over. “They didn’t give up,” said fifth grade teacher Lisa Walsh. “We think that teaches them about life and how you are not going to be able to have success every time…most of the time you are going to be learning from your mistakes.”

Guest speaker Chris Knauper speaks to fifth grade students at Daniel Boone“I think it’s a very cool learning experience,” said fifth grader Claire Vines. “It lets you know about how science, technology, engineering, and math all work together...STEAM prepares you for later in life.” The students also had the opportunity to hear from Chris Knauper, a research and development engineer with Cardinal Health, who shared his work managing the software design for feeding products used in hospitals around the world.

Overall, the day provided students with an opportunity to think about their futures and the endless possibilities. “I want them to find their passion,” reflected Eberhard. “I think STEAM can open doors to students. They might not feel like they can do anything, but they can.”

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