Get switched on to STEM
THE aspirations of our future scientists and engineers were fostered this week, as primary students from across Central Queensland came to Emerald for a two-day technology conference.
In its sixth year, the Kids Connect program at St Patrick’s on October 23 and 24 aimed to promote an interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).
The slogan for 2019 was ‘Get Switched On’.
“This is organised by kids, for kids,” assistant principal Miss McCosker said.
“We want students to have access to different elements of tech they wouldn’t have in their day to day primary schooling.”
Teachers from across the Rockhampton Diocese came to deliver the various workshops and each student focused on one of his or her choosing. On offer was Minecraft Edu, Sphero Robotics, Makey Makey, Lego Robotics, Green Screen Animation and Film Making, Breakout Edu and Scratch Coding.
“Our aim is to foster a love of STEM, because that’s where the future is,” Miss McCosker said.
“It sparks an interest and gives an opportunity to develop a passion.
“We try to connect the workshops to a potential future career.”
A presentation was also given by SwarmFarm, an agricultural robotics company based in Gindie.
CFO Jocie Bate was enthusiastic about the school program.
“I love what they are doing at the school – getting kids together from different towns. That sort of thing always inspires you for more ideas.
“It’s important to get kids in front of new technology to open their minds up to what the jobs of the future are.”
Kids helped program Mike the Robot’s driving pattern.
“There’s a lot of interest in schools to see this technology,” Ms Bate said.
“A lot of machinery in agriculture is large and cumbersome. That can change with automation.
“Robots can change the way we farm.”