The following was provided by Johna Thomson, president of the Enumclaw Schools Foundation and Thunder Mountain Middle School PTSO
Students at Enumclaw’s middle schools have a new learning tool this year – a classroom full of computers where students learn how to use a drafting program to design an object, then make it using simple objects.
This exciting new curriculum, called Project Lead the Way, was implemented this year by the Enumclaw School District at both Thunder Mountain and Enumclaw middle schools. The purpose of this new curriculum is to expose students to critical-reasoning and problem-solving skills in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education.
Project Lead the Way was implemented in party with financial support from the Enumclaw Schools Foundation.
In Mrs. Horton’s classroom at Thunder Mountain, four students showed me the steps they took to design a dragster car to scale, using the drafting program “Inventor” on their computers. They printed their final design, then used hand tools to shape the car into the dimensions indicated in their drawing. TMMS’s PTSO provided a grant to Mrs. Horton so she could purchase the hand tools needed for students to transform a triangular block of wood into an aerodynamic dragster car.
Once all the cars were made, it was time to race. Two cars at a time raced on an air-powered track. The cars traveled so fast on the track, it was often hard to see who won. Win or lose, it was exciting to see the results of students engaged in creating, designing, building and problem solving in this hands-on project.
To learn more about the Enumclaw Schools Foundation and the programs we are helping fund to enhance educational opportunities for students in the Enumclaw School District, check out our website at www.EnumclawSchoolsFoundation.org; like us on Facebook; or join us for our annual “Jazzing Up Education” luncheon on Tuesday, Feb. 12 at 11:30 at the Expo Center fieldhouse (details available on ourwebsite).