At Farragut Middle School students are learning how to design through hands on experience! Through the 5th-8th grade technology sequence students learn how to become a 21st century learner. A 21st century learner is a student that can master content, and at the same time be a diverse and open minded problem solver. Students can demonstrate technological skills as well as the ability to adapt and learn new skills. This is learning for a new age of technical entrepreneurs who realize that technology will only play a greater role in our lives as time passes. It is no longer good enough to just “know things.” A 21st century learner is ever-curious and always learning and sharpening their skills to adapt to change.
The 5th grade students will be slowly introduced to technology by developing skills in the computer science / logic realm, as well as learning touch typing. This will be the student’s first taste of technology here at Farragut Middle School. The students will learn the computer systems, software applications and become familiar with the technology program. Touch typing is an ever important skill, despite children being “digital natives” most of their days technology will consist of mobile technology, therefore the need to develop this skill in school exists. Students also will be acquainted with various computer science logic and coding applications. This curriculum is a fun way for students of all levels of skill and varying interests to create lines of code and learn the logic behind programming.
The 6th grade is the beginning of the engineering curriculum! This year students will begin to think like an engineer. Students will begin study on how to create a 3-D Computer Aided Design (CAD) model. The students will discuss and learn how to talk and think like an engineer by studying the engineering design process. Students will get hands on projects like designing structures, circuits and rockets. This will expand the students learning to encompass engineering software as well as techniques.
The 7th grade lets students take a more in depth look at the engineering design process. The students will start to create a design and see it through from finish to end using the design process. Students will be able to understand that the design process is not a linear process; they will also learn how their specific process works and how others design as well.
The 8th grade brings together all 3 years and combines software and engineering design and gives students 2 main projects in class: An educational video game project and an adaptive technology project. Students will be using a coding platform named scratch to create the video game, for a client of their choosing. Then students will learn the basics of robotics, how to program them and how to use them. Students will then use the robots to create adaptive technology for people who would need such technology.
Overall the technology program here is ever changing, technology changes at a rapid pace, components get faster, parts get smaller, technology grows more efficient with age, and as does our technology program. The makerspace is a fantastic example of what happens when the school and community support the program. In the makerspace we have hand-tools, 3D printers, robots, circuits, Arduinos, Raspberry Pi’s, Makey Makey’s, cutting edge software and so much more. Your child is in for a very exciting 4 years.
Software we use in class (all free.)Autodesk InventorEV3CuraAutodesk AutoCADWest Point Bridge DesignerTinkerCAD (online)