All JuniorSTEM workshops focus on STEM (Science Technology Engineering Maths) based skills and knowledge. There is a strong emphasis on Technology and Engineering which make up the bulk of the sessions but there are clear links to science and maths.
STEM skills and knowledge are becoming more and more important for the future as more organisations seek to mechanise and automate to save money and become more efficient. Yet STEM subjects, especially Technology and Engineering, are rarely taught or encouraged in primary schools thanks to the drive to improve literacy and move up the league tables. A JuniorSTEM workshop will help children with a natural talent for practical Engineering and computer skills to shine. These children are often not high achieving in normal class activities.
All of our STEM workshops use the brilliant Lego WeDo resources which enable a wide range of abilities to access the activities. Higher attaining pupils enjoy experimenting with the adaptable programming APP or building amazing upgrades and improvements to the models. More artistically creative children concentrate on the aesthetic properties. Lower attaining children explore the models through play at their own level.
During the workshop introduction we quickly explain the main skills an engineer should have and give an small insight into the great variety engineering jobs that are available. This is linked to Technology in the form of programming to introduce ‘Robotics Engineering’. At the end of a workshop, we like to spend a couple of minutes making the class aware of the demand for the skills they have been learning and the opportunities for a career in Engineering or programming (or both as a robotics engineer). The importance of science and maths knowledge to support these subjects is also explained.
We like to think that in the future some children who have participated in a JuniorSTEM workshop will contact us and let us know how they were inspired by the activities to become an engineer, programmer or STEM expert.