Sunjay, a middle school student learns how important engineering and robotics is in today’s society. Photo by Julian Stainback. Over the past years, Sunjay, 10, came out of his shell as a result of joining the robotics club in Haslett. The Haslett Robotics Club provides students with instruction in introductory engineering. This includes learning more about robots and how they are assembled.
Four years ago, the Haslett Robotics Club consisted of one LEGO robotics team. Today, there are four LEGO teams plus three VEX teams. The robotics club is considered a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) program. LEGO participants are typically between ages 9 to 14, and these students work with graphical programming. LEGO teams compete in two or three tournaments throughout the year. For the tournaments, they must program their robots and make a presentation that analyzes how a social issue can be solved using technology.
It’s no secret that technology makes people’s lives easier. Haslett school board members discussed in their last meeting what type of technological advancements should be made for teachers to reach full academic potential with students. Steve Sneed, Haslett Robotics Club representative, reached out to the school board and requested to expand robotics in the district. The goal of robotics is to prepare students who are pursuing a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) related field. According to Sneed, by the year 2020, the U.S. will have more than 1 million unfilled computer-programming and engineering related jobs.