1 of 1
STEM CampStudents attending the science summer camp placed their gear on board a bus earlier this week at the Kennedy Recreation Center, 10th and Washington Boulevard, Kansas City, Kan. (Staff photo)
There is one program in our city that is working to prepare our young people today, for the leaders they will become tomorrow. It’s the STEM program. STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math
One main focus of the program is to inspire, encourage, and empower students with the knowledge and experience to consider pursuing non-traditional fields of study in the STEM areas.
Students who attend the program range in ages 9 to 15 and come daily each week from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. A variety of tasks and activities are planned for the students to participate in which are directly related to STEM and include using the following skills: reading, writing, listening, speaking and problem-solving.
During the first two weeks students learned where coal comes from, how it is processed to produce the everyday use of electricity, the elements of food science and nutrition, and also began working on the scientific method of conducting a science experiment.
The daily activities include students working independently on reading and writing projects. They also spend time as a whole group listening to guest speakers, asking questions and discussing a variety of topics.
Then in their multi-aged and multi-leveled groups they solve a given problem, perform science experiments and make presentations to the entire group.
The program is housed at the John F. Kennedy Community Center, which is near Big Eleven Lake. Each day after lunch students walk to the lake for a break and to write on a specific topic. Many of the students commented on how peaceful it is to sit by the lake and experience nature.
What makes this a strong and effective program? The classes are led by five educators who are professionals in their fields and who are dedicated to fostering the development of young people in our community. This group includes teachers, a tech professional and engineers working as a team. It is the hope of all involved that students will gain knowledge about nontraditional fields of study and be inspired to make them their career goals in the future.