STEM Blog

Cookies anyone?

3D printing empowers individuals to design something and bring it to life as a tangible, physical item. SLS is bringing this power to our students in Computer Class as early as in Third Grade.

Developing 3D design skills incorporates imagination, critical thinking, spatial awareness and an the trial-and-error nature of engineering. Our curriculum makes these concepts understandable to the students at the appropriate grade level.

As part of this effort, each SLS Fourth Grader designed a cookie cutter using an online application called TinkerCad. A representative design was printed on our new Dremel 3D printers, allowing each Fourth Graders to take a cookie cutter home.

One Fourth Grader, in particular, was so enamored with the cutter that she used it to make a batch of sugar cookies, decorated for Valentine’s Day. We are so happy to see our STEM program is motivating students to take action on their own initiative!

 

How do we Teach Stem?

Ready for our Valentine’s Day STEM Fun period, a school-wide opportunity to engage in #stem with a focus on collaborating, exploring possibilities, designing, and problem-solving 

Calculating Chances

Over the course of a game of Monopoly, how likely is it that you would end up in jail? As part of our ongoing STEM Speaker Series today SLS Fifth Grade students had the opportunity to learn how to compute the answer to that and similar questions from Mr. Mike Blasi, retired National Security Agency employee. Mr. Blasi is a member of the NSA Speakers Bureau, serves as a guide at the National Cryptologic Museum in Fort Meade. Mr. Blasi was assisted by his daughter, Laura former SLS student. SLS students learned about real-world applications of probability and random processes. They learned how to form a hypothesis and test it using the scientific method. To make these concepts more relatable, Mr. Blasi discussed how dice and coin flips can affect outcomes in games like Monopoly, Risk, and Yahtzee. We want to thank Mr. Blasi for taking time out of his day and coming to SLS to provide a better understanding of probability, statistics and why they will almost assuredly not win the lottery. Stay tuned as we continue our STEM Speaker Series in the coming weeks.

Learning about Clouds

Today during second-grade science, Mrs. Anacker did a fun project with the students to help them remember and reinforce their learning about the four types of clouds. Which is your favorite: Cumulus, Nimbus, Stratus or Cirrus?

Galactic Knights

The fourth St. Louis School FIRST LEGO League (FLL) team will be competing tomorrow (Saturday) at the Prince Georges Community College state qualifier in Largo. The SLS community wishes the Galactic Knights, coached by Lou Faustini, Kelly Scott Davis, and Michael Piszczek the best. A huge thank you to the parent coaches and volunteers for their support of the team. Go Knights, we are very proud of you! 

Galaxy Voyagers

Goals of the FIRST LEGO League (FLL) include helping students develop critical thinking and team-building skills. Today, the Galaxy Voyagers demonstrated these attributes during the qualifier event at DeMatha High School in Hyattsville. The team, comprised of students ranging from Fourth to Seventh Grade, excelled at what FLL calls “Gracious Professionalism.” The older students acted as mentors to the younger ones and inspired them to work together during their Project Presentation and Core Values competition. This team excelled in team spirit and even led the crowd in a line dance with the judges in the middle of the floor! St. Louis School is very proud of these students and grateful to their coaches, Beth Simon, Muditha Allen and Francisco Andolz for their leadership and support. Way to Go Knights!

Rubik's Cube Club

Did you know there are more than 43 quintillion ways to scramble the Rubik’s Cube? Our Rubik’s Cube Club is up for the challenge!

Headed to the State Championship!

Breaking News!

Both SLS First Lego League teams competing today have qualified to go on to the State Championship. The "Nebula Narwhals" and the "Space Nuggets" both earned a spot to move on to the next round of competition, to be held in March at UMBC.

Congratulations to the team members, coaches and parents for such an outstanding performance today!

Into Orbit

Two of the four St. Louis School FIRST LEGO League (FLL) teams will be competing this Saturday at the Catonsville High School state qualifier. The SLS community wishes the Nebula Narwhals, coached by Anne Reed and Jenn Sleeman, and the Space Nuggets, coached by Michael Blackwood and Paul Connors, the best tomorrow. A huge thank you to the parent coaches and volunteers for their support of the teams. Go, Knights, we are very proud of you!

3D Printing and Design

The St. Louis School 3D Dremel printers have been busy bringing student designs to life. Our cross-curricular STEM program incorporates the four C's (creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, and communication) and is an integral part of classroom instruction.

Building a Backyard Playground

Ms. Frederick’s math class was tasked with building a backyard playground this week. They were given budget constraints, along with differing sale prices for materials and calls from the warehouse modifying their orders. The boss even called to move up their deadline! The students did a great job of collaborating under pressure to solve this real-world challenge! 

Future Mars Rover Engineers

St. Louis School kicked off our spring Cyber STEM After School session with a hands-on engineering exercise. Students were divided into teams and challenged to design a space lander using the engineering design process. The lander design had to keep two marshmallow "aliens" safe inside a cup as it was dropped from various heights. Prior to beginning the challenge, we reviewed the key science concepts of shock-absorption, drag forces, and stability and discussed NASA’s mission of landing a rover on Mars. Students used the four C’s (creativity, communication, collaboration, and critical thinking) to design and implement a variety of clever structures, as you can see in these photographs. Our future NASA engineers came up with some clever designs and had a lot of fun while doing so. We look forward to a successful and enlightening session! #BeaKnight #SLSSTEM

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