The VSTE Board of Directors and Conference Committee are excited to have you join us at the 32nd Annual Technology in Education Conference. #VSTE17 promises to be the best ever.

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IMPORTANT: While we encourage you to save and share, indicating interest in a session DOES NOT guarantee a seat in a session. All sessions, with the exception of Promethean’s Escape Room, are first come, first served. 
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Tuesday, December 5 • 10:00am - 11:00am
“Super-empowered STEM Skill learning by using an Iterative Design Process for a Wind Turbine Competition”

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We want to show the positive effects of participating in a wind turbine design competition that students in Bath County Public Schools have been participating in for three years. The design process over that time has resulted in improvements each year. The hands-on aspect of the project has helped super-empower students by improve their STEM skills. This has resulted in STEM career choices for some of the participants.
Empowering students and their learning gives the learning process back to the students. It is, by necessity, student centered. Truly empowered students go above and beyond and incorporate learning outside of regular school hours.
Bath County High School(BCHS) has been participating in KidWind, a wind turbine design competition, since the 2014-2015 school year and qualified for the national competition during the 2015-2016 school year. BCHS students used an iterative design process to improve on their entries each year, keeping some aspects of the previous year’s entry and adding design changes to improve the entry. This year’s major improvement was the addition of an autonomous gear ratio changer run with a Raspberry Pi. Valley Elementary School began participating in the 2016-2017 school year. Though they only participated for a short period of time, they came home from their first competition with ideas to improve their design. The students also keep an engineer’s notebook and present their work before a panel of judges. There is also a written test assessing knowledge of the concepts that are utilized in the development of the turbine. Schools meet to compete on a regional or state level each spring. This program is a combination of after school and in-class activities. Students who participate in the competition put in hours after school to complete their entries. Students report that they enjoy the activities and parents report that the students talk about what they did in preparation for the competition. Students learn more about the subject area as they prepare for the panel of judges by writing about their activities in their notebooks and in getting ready for the oral presentation. Additionally, students feel more confident with regular classroom STEM activities. At the high school level, some graduating students have gone on to study programming, engineering, and renewable energy. Come hear how we have empowered our students have benefitted with KidWind.
Students continually ask, “Why do I have to learn this?” while learning science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) skills. They are uncomfortable and often express a lack of confidence in STEM classes. Students are also unfamiliar with the work done by people in these fields. In other words, they are not empowered. Hands-on STEM activities help students to consider STEM related careers and possibly select a STEM related field as a career choice. We empower our students to make better career choices by giving them the information they need to make those choices.

avatar for Ed Ozols

Ed Ozols

ITRT, Bath County High School
I enjoy teaching others about computers as well as learning about them myself. Outside of work, I enjoy camping, fishing and hiking.

Tuesday December 5, 2017 10:00am - 11:00am EST
Crystal C