The updated STEM Lab is the newest addition to Shepherd Elementary School. It serves to educate and protect young students. The Shepherd Community Fund in Honor of Robert Bates, Kellogg Youth Fund, David B. and Susan K. Keilitz Family Fund, and Michael D. and Dianne Morey Community Needs Fund helped make the funding possible for the STEM Lab improvements throughout the Summer of 2018. More than 800 students, ages 5-12 years old, have been able to utilize the STEM LAB this year, learning more about the changing world of technology around them.
There is now a 6 x 6 Lego wall, and a two sided activity center, consisting of a 3 x 4 foot framed pegboard and a 3 x 4 foot magnetic whiteboard. Students can learn from a magnetic whiteboard table, charge electronic devices, and experiment with data coding. Shepherd Elementary School was also able to buy two iPads, four Amazon Fire Tablets, several Lego and Knex education kits for different grades and abilities, two Dash robots and two Botley robots. These new tools encourage dexterity, hand-eye coordination, problem-solving skills, and working with advanced technology. The Dash robots respond to sounds and voices. The little robots encourage interactive learning while being fun to use. The Botley robots help teach children quick and fun lessons about coding and help guide them through various STEM skills.
The addition of a door to the Lab, as well as a wall in the back of the room, will help protect students in case of emergencies, such as a lock down. As jobs in STEM fields continue to grow, this lab will help expand the students’ knowledge of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.