Science, technology, engineering, math – regardless of which subject students were interested in, Eastside Elementary's recent STEM Night event showcased just how diverse and interesting the fields of study can be.
Whether it was making miniature hot-air balloons in the lunchroom or using robots and Spheros in the gym, various parts of the school were transformed into event areas where children could participate in creative, practical applications of STEM.
There were opportunities to make marshmallow shooters out of plastic cups, chances for students to build their own “Leaning Tower of Pasta,” opportunities to make Xango bottle music, and much, much more. The school also made sure students and parents were fed throughout the night by handing out free popcorn.
While Eastside Principal Wesley Cupp and the teachers and staff who stayed late to help with the event naturally wanted to showcase the importance of STEM, creating memories and instilling the students with a sense of pride for their community was another major goal.
“If they take anything out of this, I want them to remember how much they enjoyed being at Eastside,” Cupp said. “It’s easy to talk about learning how to do this or learning how to do that, but really it’s the memories and experiences they develop here -- that’s what’s most important. That’s what going to grow our society.”
Even for those who don’t intend to enter a STEM career, knowledge of the subjects is naturally important. Day to day activities like cooking and measuring demand knowledge of science and math, and the January 23 event was designed to both demonstrate that point and allow the kids to have fun in the process.
“It’s not just about crunching numbers all day,” Cupp explained. “We want them to love doing what they’re doing and being exposed to different things. Some students probably didn’t even realize how many things they enjoy doing involve science. We’re starting them off early and giving them a foundation in these things.
While Eastside students are obviously far off from picking careers, the ones who are inspired to enter STEM fields would be approaching some of the highest-paying, fastest-growing jobs on the market. There are definitive merits to being interested in science, technology, engineering, and math, and Eastside more than demonstrated that.
Those interested in future PSD events can find more information by visiting https://www.polk.k12.ga.us/.