Stewart Manufacturing sponsored Bay College’s new program Inventing with Gizmos and Gadgets, Aug. 1-11. This recent program consisted of four sessions split into two weeks. Children ages 7-12 were taught the fundamentals of engineering using building blocks called littleBits™. Each littleBits™ kit comes with motors, wheels, lights, switches, servos and buzzers.
Children were split into groups and introduced to basic circuit building by using an input, output, wire, signal, and power. Once kids were familiar with how the blocks worked, they were later put into groups to use their imagination and complete a series of mini-challenges.
Along with a monetary donation, this sponsorship involved letting an employee from Stewart Manufacturing teach all four sessions. IT Specialist Michael Malone, was kind enough to teach the two week program.”The best part for me, is seeing the light come on for a child that figures something out,” said Malone. “They would think outside the box and come up with solutions using critical thinking.”
Each session consisted of a three hour class for four days. The kids learned all about how circuits work, the inventing process, and how to test prototypes.
On the last day of class, students completed their last activity called Invent for Good. Groups had to work together to create an invention that would somehow make our world a better place. The kids created impressive intentions, such as a robot that could lead the elderly, and a robot fan that could cool if someone’s air conditioning broke. “This program really puts the students in the driver’s seat of their own imagination, and allows them to build and create – that’s the part I liked most of all,” said Malone.
Bay College’s Grant Project Manager, Beth Ann Belcher, remarked: “For our first year introducing a brand new program, the inventing camp was a huge success. A huge part of this success was due to the outstanding team of instructors who went over and above to give the kids the best learning experience possible. We definitely want to offer an inventing camp again next year.”
View Bay College’s press release here.