The Power of Engineering Challenges
STEM is taking over education. Rightfully so, as it integrates math, science and creativity all into one. When students have a decent working relationships of how parts work, they can be provided with "challenges" to solve. Nothing comes close to the perseverance gained through multiple programming trials when students are trying to solve a problem.
I have really been able to get this going after school in my robotics club. Last semester, our theme was "battle bots" (as seen above) and students designed a robot that would stay within an arena, have an offensive weapon and push the other robots out, or overturn them. This semester we're focusing on "search and rescue" as our theme.
Here's what students have to say:
"Our class if fun! We get to socialize and problem solve."
"We get to practice our programming skills and have a great time!"
"It really teaches you to never give up. Figuring out how to "connect the pieces" is the main challenge!"