Explore Engineering at Casa Hidalgo keeps bringing more and more bright ideas from students who are eager to learn more. In my opinion, students always know more than they think they know. They’re just shy to show it. I enjoy the activities where we brainstorm ideas of what we think something is based off on previous knowledge and they get more than half of the ideas correct. My students are not shy within each other, I think they’re shy to show their smarts. Since the last blog post was written my students, and I attended the Biennial Teen Studio Workshop thanks to the Chicago Architecture Biennial and the Chicago Architecture Foundation. The students were able to explore topics and architecture and put them into use. Students learned about, drawing, layouts, planning, and physical building. Two of the students mentioned to me that even though they had no interest in Architecture it was fun because they were able to explore something different. Due to time constraints students were not able to completely finish their physical builds but one student said “If I had more time to finish I think I would have had one of the best models this workshop has created”, and I have to agree, the student’s plan incorporated everything they had learned throughout the workshop and was really elaborate.
The students have worked on activities like taking inventory of supplies and working together to make sure all counts are right and have worked on Code.org. To some students’ code came naturally and it was nice being able to see them help each other when one was having trouble on a problem.
The students also created their own 3D print designs – first on paper and then on TinkerCAD, a beginner 3D design software. The students were able to incorporate some of the skills they learned at the Biennial Teen Studio Workshop into their paper designs to make it as precise and neat as possible.
Since October 27th to November 16th, students have learned about topics that revolved around STEM. In the next session, students will be in able explore topics in Business and be able to incorporate those ideas to future. Students have voiced to me that they want to be more professional and be able to speak to professionals with confidence. I hope the skills they learn in the next couple of sessions stay with them for the rest of their educational careers.
Written By: Uzziel Fernandez