MILTON — Many rising Santa Rosa County middle school students are relaxing this summer, but several took part in a summer Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics, or STEAM, summer camp.
GALLERY: Photos from the STEAM summer camp at King Middle School in Milton>
“This is the first year our school district has offered the summer STEAM camp,” said Susan Still, King Middle School’s lead teacher for last week’s session. King was one of four locations for the camp, where rising sixth-graders could use STEAM knowledge, creativity and teamwork to make a product that could save lives and present it before school officials.
Students’ mission was to lower the G-force of a vehicle coming toward an impact with an unstoppable item.
Each group used a wooden ramp and car to test their product, a cushion. The data each group compiled was recorded through a device installed on each vehicle. On Friday, students in small groups worked together to make a crash cushion product — using such items as cat litter, marshmallows, cotton balls and other items — and designed a presentation for a request for proposal.
“They had to do their own research, use the data and compile the data, market that cushion and sell it,” Still said.
WATCH: Video of Susan Still speaking about the importance of STEAM curriculum in Santa Rosa County>
Bill Emerson, assistant superintendent for curriculum instruction and assessment, said the week-long camp benefited students and teachers.
“Students have really enjoyed it, (they) have a lot of excitement, they want to be competitive,” he said. “(Teachers) have also enjoyed the week, a time to have an intimate time with them (students) and watch them think through a problem-solving process.”
Jacob Howell said he learned a lot about G-force and its potentially dangerous impact.
“At first, I thought it was going to be boring … but I got to design on computer, build and help out on a team,” he said.
In addition to having a STEAM summer camp in July for eight-graders, school officials plan to have similar STEAM summer camps next year.