STEM Camp Foundation is pleased and honoured that Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, has agreed to serve as our viceregal patron.
Before becoming Governor General, Julie Payette was an astronaut, engineer, scientific broadcaster and corporate director.
From 1992 to 2013, Ms. Payette worked as an astronaut and flew two missions in space. She also served many years as CAPCOM (Capsule Communicator) at NASA’s Mission Control Center in Houston, Texas, and was Chief Astronaut for the Canadian Space Agency.
She is well respected for her work in developing policies to promote science and technology. From 2011 to 2013, she worked as a scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C., and was appointed scientific authority for Quebec in the United States. Between July 2013 and October 2016, she served as Chief Operating Officer of the Montréal Science Centre.
Ms. Payette is active in multiple facets of the community. She has produced several scientific outreach short programs on Radio-Canada and is a member of McGill University’s Faculty of Engineering Advisory Board. She has served on the boards of the Montréal Science Centre Foundation, Robotique FIRST Québec, Drug Free Kids Canada, and the Montreal Bach Festival. She has long served on the board of Own The Podium, a granting organization dedicated to high performance sport in Canada, and was recently appointed to the International Olympic Committee Women in Sport Commission.
The STEM Camp Foundation was pleased to receive the following report from STEM Camp Foundation Grant recipient and grade 6 teacher, Susan Miller.
White Oaks Public School was pleased to receive a Stem Camp Foundation grant that allowed us to purchase Microbits for our grade 6 classes to pursue STEM ideas for their Science Fair projects. Microbits have lots of different functionality and an easy to code interface for novice programmers. Our students started by learning how to code simple games like Rock, Paper, Scissors. They quickly realised that they could explore all kinds of different functions such as creating a light meter to help ensure consistency in a science fair project investigating the effect of different coloured text on readability, using aluminum foil and alligator clips to create a timing gate to measure distance/time travelled by a toy car, and to create their own step counters using the accelerometer function. The best part was exploring the radio function which allowed students to transmit information such as temperature from a nearby place without having to actually get cold!
Thank you so much to the Stem Camp Foundation for giving our students the chance to integrate and pursue their curiosity while learning about independent and dependent variables and how to create a fair test to compare their results. With many of our students moving on to the Thames Valley and Regional Science Fair in March, this experience will certainly shape their curiosity and desire to extend their learning!
This spring the STEM Camp Foundation was pleased to support a project at Emily Stowe Public School in Norwich for the Kindergarten class, submitted by teacher Kathryn DeJong.
Mrs. DeJong indicates: “We run an inquiry-based program in our Kindergarten class, and we are currently exploring and learning about “Space”. Through our research we have found a number of areas we can explore and create to enhance our learning about Space. We plan to build some equipment and models based on our ‘space fact-finding. Both the process and the final product will be used on an on-going basis to develop our students’ inquiry skills, including the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).”
The photos here show the children building space suits and transforming their puppet theatre into a space shuttle in June 2019.
On Friday May 31st, SCF Executive Director, Ron Cougler, and Board Chair, Kevin Cougler, visited the Grade 5/6 class at Trinity School to see the children program robots in their classroom. The robots were purchased through a grant from STEM Camp FOUNDATION awarded to teacher Rebecca Ruxton who was excited to see her students learn more about programming and coding as an introduction to technology in the junior and intermediate grades.
Project Coding through robots incorporates many STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)areas of study. The educational goals of this coding STEM project are to inspire students to try new things and be resilient, collaborate on a group project, encourage teamwork, enhance problem-solving skills and learn about potential STEM career opportunities available through programs in college and universities.
STEM Camp FOUNDATION has been pleased to sponsor this STEM Project and to see the excitement of students as they engage in a challenging look into the world of STEM Coding and Robotics at an early age.
STEM Camp FOUNDATION is pleased to sponsor the FIRST Robotics Team WIRED with a grant of $1,000 to carry on their work with Grade 9 and 10 students from College Avenue Secondary School and Woodstock Collegiate Institute in Woodstock, ON. WIRED is an acronym for Woodstock Intercollegiate Robotics and Engineering Dominators, a group of 20 high school students who meet three days a week, after school hours. Their mission is to design, construct and program a robot from top to bottom that will perform a specific set of tasks.
Students are using a wide variety of STEM skills during this process, gears, pulleys, belts, electrical systems and Java coding principles. Students learn teamwork, problem solving, design, scientific principles, and perform engineering and mathematical calculations by working on their robot. These WIRED students will also be carrying their learning forward by creating an outreach program for elementary schools in May this year.
STEM Camp Foundation accepts grant applications from elementary teachers for projects that will help support STEM projects in their schools. Submissions are received online twice a year, by September 30thand by January 31st. Decisions are made early in the following month and funds distributed to successful candidates in October and February each school year.