WACO STEM ProgramWritten by Theresa Rose on December 2, 2015
WACO CSD has worked diligently to provide technology across the district and is a 1:1 at the secondary level. Each student grade 7th – 12th is provided a Chromebook for use in class. WACO Elementary is proficient in technology available to students as well. WACO secondary staff has indicated the importance of providing students with great STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education) opportunities. We are also a PLTW (Project Lead The Way) Gateway school. WACO offers the PLTW Design and Modelling and Automated Robotics courses to our junior high students. Pending the award of more funds to go towards technology, WACO would like to continue to improve of STEM offerings with additional PLTW courses to our curriculum. This award could go towards providing equipment needed for those classes, as well as training for instructors. WACO is enthusiastic add PLTW Launch courses to the Elementary programming.
In addition to the current curriculum offered during regular school hours (Monday – Thursday classes), WACO’s “+1 Fridays,” offer optional additional courses that enrich student learning opportunities. These funds would assist providing new technology related opportunities on those days. This would expand on WACO’s current STEM enrichment options which include: Lego League, First Tech Challenge, and MindcraftEdu.
On Monday, December 7th, WACO all staff and students, grades 7-12 will participate in a short assembly: “Hour of Code” This initiative is to promote computer science literacy in students. After an introduction to the program, students will then hear from a guest speaker, Christopher Pitzen, who has worked as a programmer on the Guitar Hero series of games. Students will work on code through code.org and will have time to ask questions of Mr. Pitzen.