Showing posts with label Engineering. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Engineering. Show all posts

Monday, August 3

HOW TO: apps that introduce kids to coding

The need for children to be “tech-savvy” is becoming more apparent as technology continues progressing at such a rapid pace. Beyond inspiring future career paths, introducing children to coding opens the window to a new way of thinking in regards to solving problems, nurturing creativity, and completing projects.

Engaging in age-appropriate computer programming also enables children to gain confidence in embracing new technology by helping them understand how technology works and the processes involved in developing it.

The following apps offer children simple and kid-friendly opportunities to become familiar with coding.


Designed specifically for children, Scratch was created by MIT students and staff.


Introduces coding to children as young as five-years-old.


An effective tool for teaching programming.


This is a great tool to help students without coding experience gain confidence in the basics of programming, logical thinking, and problem-solving.

Daisy the Dinosaur

This provides an easy introduction to programming for younger students. 

Contributed by Doug Fleischli, Fairmont Private Schools

Image by ibtimes

Monday, July 27

FAIRMONT FIVE: boldly go! … fostering girls’ interest in STEM

There are many fun ways to inspire a girl’s interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Educational experts have identified the need for more girls to be engaged in STEM related studies especially in the junior high and high school years. Besides developing a stronger sense of scientific inquiry, STEM provides a solid foundation for problem-solving and ingenuity that can apply to all walks of life.

A study of 4th graders showed that 66 percent of girls and 68 percent of boys take an interest in science. However, these numbers change significantly in the teenage years. According to author Susan Gibbs Goetz, an achievement gap between girls and boys appears during these years in science related areas. By the age of seventeen, girls achieve at a notably lower level than boys.

Here are a few creative and fun ideas that will help foster your daughter’s interest in STEM related subjects:

1. Find ways to encourage curiosity—Raise questions about how plants grow, why stars sparkle in the evening sky, how a computer uses data, and what makes an engine work. You do not need to know these answers right off the bat. Seek out the answers together. These and many other questions will go a long way to inspire life-long learning.

2. Activities involving STEM abound around the home from gardening and construction to cooking and plumbing. With parental supervision, the kitchen and the backyard offer perfect settings for exercising the basics of scientific research: predicting, measuring, observing, and analyzing. Offer telescopes, computers, robotic kits, microscopes, and other tools to inspire adventurous exploration filled with fun and excitement! Visit Fairmont’s Pinterest pages for ideas on conducting safe science experiments in the home.

3. Enroll in a hands-on afterschool STEM program—Fairmont offers a variety of robotics, science, and other related programs on all three campuses. Visit the MY FAIRMONT pages for Anaheim Hills, North Tustin, and Historic Anaheim Campuses to learn more about our afterschool programs.

4. Seek out local STEM professionals who would be interested in becoming mentors for girls—Meeting engineers, doctors, computer scientists, professors, pharmacists, and others will inspire dreams and learning paths leading to exciting career opportunities.

5. Encourage your daughter to consider STEM related topics as "interesting" rather than “too hard or complicated”—Take fun, small steps to become more familiar and confident with STEM subjects. Some of history’s greatest discoveries were the result of a big mess or mistake. STEM offers important lessons on persistence by teaching that mistakes are expected along the journey of scientific inquiry.

Visit SciGirls for more ideas for encouraging girls in STEM.

Contributed by Doug Fleischli, Fairmont Private Schools

Image by Yorkregion

Monday, June 8


 STEM is a new buzz word in the education field. But what exactly is it? Simply defined, STEM is an acronym for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The STEM Education Coalition states that incorporating a STEM-based curriculum is critical if the United States wants to remain a global economic and technological leader.

The goal of this education initiative is to create a STEM-based curriculum for all students. However, Fairmont Private Schools is proactive in providing students with a STEM-rich curriculum. Fairmont currently boasts robust, competitive robotics clubs at the junior high and high school levels, as well as advanced mathematics programs, and the Advanced Science and Engineering Program (ASEP) for high school students. A total of 24 awards were earned by Fairmont junior high students at the 2014 Orange County Science and Engineering Fair. Fairmont students are also introduced to technology in the classroom, working with iPads and Interactive Whiteboards from preschool through high school.

Despite the national push for more technical training required for STEM-related jobs, it is important to maintain a balance between study of the humanities and study of the technological fields. During the 2011 release of a next generation iPad, Steve Jobs explained that “it’s in Apple’s DNA that technology alone is not enough — that it’s technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields us the result that makes our hearts sing.” Fairmont believes that both liberal arts and STEM focuses are important, thus, Fairmont students are enriched with opportunities to learn musical instruments, participate in theater productions, read classical literature, create wonderful works of art, and engage with curriculum that examines history, sociology, and more! 
After graduating from Fairmont Preparatory Academy, 87% of Fairmont seniors are accepted to US News & World Report’s list of top 100 American colleges and universities, many entering the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. These successful outcomes result from a well-balanced education that enable students to flourish academically and artistically.    
Contributed by Rebecca Stokes, Fairmont Private Schools

Image by Teacher Reboot Camp