Learning With Legos | VideoKristin Clouston | 2/22/2013
It may look like child`s play, but these teachers are learning to use Legos as a teaching tool.
"This would be an introduction to the elementary kids to learn how to program a computer by icons and connecting the icons together in a very simplistic way," said Valley City State STEM Coordinator Gary Ketterling.
Teachers say they`re having fun, but it is challenging.
"We were told build something that looks like a Ferris Wheel and then it was hard to visualize that. Exactly how we`d go about doing that but when we saw the different components and pieces they had. We kind of got our plan together," said fourth grade teacher Annie Beck.
High School teachers are also learning a new program, but this one`s more complicated.
"They know the math and they know the science, but not a lot of them know the technology and engineering," said Valley City State science professor Hilde Van Gijssel.
So they`re learning how to use Legos to make a battery chargers and prosthetic arms.
"I think it`s sometimes very scary for teachers. So what I try to do in a workshop like this is create something they feel more comfortable applying in their class. The idea they can do this," Van Gijssel said.
The teachers are getting the hang of it but say they expect their students will pick it up faster than they did.
The kits can be expensive. The one used to make the Ferris Wheels is about $200. The STEM program at Valley City State is going to lend kits to some schools so they can try them out before buying them.