MyStemKits Visits FETC, Discovery on Parade, and Atlanta Public School’s STEM Technology Expo

 In Community Events

MyStemKits Visits FETC, Discovery on Parade, and Atlanta Public School’s STEM Technology Expo

February has been quite a busy month for us at! Our Florida local, 3D modeler Hannah Olson, travelled down to Orlando to exhibit at the Future of Educational Technology Conference (FETC) with 3D-printer partner Dremel, while the rest of our team stayed in Atlanta and set up a display at Atlanta Public School’s STEM Technology Expo. The next week we engaged our Tallahassee community at Discovery on Parade.

As promoted on their website, FETC is “the nation’s largest, independent education technology event focused on leveraging technology to drive preK-12 student success,” and brings thousands of teachers, administrators and media specialists to Orlando each year from around the globe. MyStemKits had the pleasure of exhibiting alongside Dremel at the conference and discussing the different education packages available that pair their consumer 3D-printers with MyStemKits models and curriculum. Their “EDU” packages pair either their original Dremel IdeaBuilder 3D20 or their newest model the Dremel IdeaBuilder 3D40 with a set of curriculum and kits available for unlimited printing on their printers. These packages include 10 models and lesson plans from the library including the ever-popular Pencil Catapult Kit, the STEM-integrated Punnett Square Dice Kit, and the deceptive Loaded Dice Kit.

We were also very excited to announce a new Dremel education package that will be released shortly, a “STEM” package which pairs their high-end 3D40 printer with a 4-month trial subscription to at our Premium Teacher level. This package also includes a few spools of filament so teachers can get a comprehensive end-to-end solution for integrating 3D-printing meaningfully into their STEM classrooms. From the printer to the hands-on learning tools to the curriculum, this package offers it all. And at a price point under $1900, the educators were very interested in integrating this into their schools. To learn more about their various education packages, you can visit their webpage here

Over the course of the three-day conference we spoke to hundreds of teachers, saw their enthusiasm, heard their ideas, and came back even more motivated to keep making and keep pushing what’s possible for 3D printing in STEM education. Meanwhile, our team in Atlanta was also out connecting with the community at the Atlanta Public School’s STEM Technology Expo.

Hosted by the Atlanta Metropolitan College, the expo showcased APS’ Approved STEM Vendors. Each vendor was personally selected by the school system to be a participant in this event. Included on that list were companies such as Creative Learning Systems, Open Source Classroom, Hire Smart Choice, and Georgia Education Solutions. MyStemKits provided visitors with a display that highlighted some of our most creative kits alongside an active 3d printer. As guests stopped to admire and discuss the display, they were able to witness the printer building an object. The one-day event introduced MyStemKits to the community, allowing us to showcase our ability to bring life to learning through this cutting-edge technology. It also allowed many who had never heard of or seen 3D printers experience it in person and see what 3D-printed kits look like. Being engaged with the community is a focus of MyStemKits and this expo allowed us to not only do that, but also it allowed us expand awareness of 3d printing. Not to mention, we were also able to inspire the next generation of students wanting to pursue STEM careers.

Back in Florida, Olson set up an exhibit at Discovery on Parade, a local community event which highlights businesses and communities that are a part of the three local colleges: Florida State University, Florida A & M University, and Tallahassee Community College. The event features a wide range of groups, from the TCC African Dance Ensemble to the FSU High-Flying Circus to STEM clubs and beyond. It was a wonderful opportunity to highlight our partnership with FSU’s Learning Systems Institute. This team writes our curriculum and comes up with the concept for most of our designs and we were proud to show that off to the community.

Open to the public, this event was a great way to get kids’ feedback on the products and speak to their parents about what they like to see in regard to educational toys. We loved watching everyone from toddlers to teens (and beyond) interact with our kits and learn about different math and science concepts while playing. The highlight of the event was when a young girl of about four saw our table and rushed over excitedly. “Ooh! Toys!” She and her brother enjoyed interacting with our various elementary kits, while their mom tasked them with challenges to guide their learning, much like teachers would in the classroom. It was wonderful reinforcement of the appeal the kits hold with students of all ages as well as the efficacy of the kits in a home as well as a school.

We’re very glad to have been a part of each of these events and can’t wait to get back out in the community at our upcoming events!

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