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About Lungoci Daniela

My name is Daniela Lungoci and I am an Elementary School teacher at Gymnasial School Ipotesti, Suceava. I enjoy turning my classroom into a place fit for learning, creating, experimenting and that’s why I am looking to provide my students with interesting and diverse learning experiences. Because I care about the future, I understood that change begins with the involvement of the teachers and of the community. I enthusiastically participated in international ERASMUS+ training courses, in the 35th ``Project Science`` Workshop, organised by the European Schoolnet, in Astronomy and Robotics courses organised by ESA and ROSA in the Netherlands and Belgium. I won the contest organised by the Leiden University (Space Awareness 2017) and a I receveid Excellence Space Science School Quality Label I subsequently got a telescope for the students at my school . I wrote two projects about space on eTwinning, in which I collaborated with a large number of european and asian teachers. Both received the ``European Quality Label``, and the second project ``3,2,1 Let’s go through the Universe with Paxi`` was awarded in the Ukraine and in Armenia by eTwinning. Last year, I participated with 2 projects in the ``Meet and Code`` activities...

THE FUTURE BEGIN WITH STEM EDUCATION – THE SPECIALISTS OF THE FUTURE

THE FUTURE BEGINS WITH STEM EDUCATION – THE SPECIALISTS OF THE FUTURE

“Education is our passport to the future since those who prepare for it today will own it tomorrow.” (Malcolm X )

The entire civilization is undergoing significant changes. We must modify the way we educate our children.

We know that the future will not be for those who know a lot (we are only a click away from knowing everything there is to know), but for those who are creative, who can work in a team, collaborate, and find solutions to increasingly complex problems as they arise, and who have developed their key competencies. Basic qualities include adaptability to change and the ability to learn throughout one’s life.

STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) education is the path to success.

STEAM education and the activities we’ve done to anchor us in the future are innovative because they aim to reach the one who is at the center of any educational approach – the student – now, according to the time we live in, by changing mentalities about how to approach the instructive-educational process. Teacher training, which, as J Piaget put it, “is the fundamental piece in the puzzle of education” and “in the picture of education and teaching, we will not find any difficulty that does not lead to teacher training,” is a critical component. Our teacher education is critical for the modernization of the educational system and society in general.

 WHY STEAM EDUCATION IS IMPORTANT…

Problem-solving, creativity, innovation, enhanced resilience, autonomous work, teamwork, adaptation, and analytical thinking are all encouraged by STEM education. All of these are necessary life skills for children to achieve! STEM programs are tailored to the age of the learner in order to help them apply their knowledge in the actual world.

Ehe educational goals of STEAM

STEAM education aims to prepare future generations for careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
Innovation is founded on the ability to think critically and exceed expectations. Economic development relies heavily on innovation. Innovative thinkers are the ones who shake the world and have the power to change it.STEAM education programs are the first step in preparing today’s children to become tomorrow’s innovators and inventors.
The invention is far more than a “lightbulb” moment. Collaboration, the practical application of STEAM, creative problem solving, entrepreneurship, and the understanding that failure is a necessary part of the journey to success is all part of the invention mentality.

If this is the Present, what does the future hold?

If you had to choose one word to describe our current era, the word “digital” could come to mind. Almost everything worthwhile is done using a computer in the digital age. Binary numbers, which represent data as super-fast impulses, have largely superseded all previous forms of communication. This has far-reaching consequences for society, which must adjust to new and fast-changing working patterns.

It’s no surprise, then, that things are changing so quickly. There is every reason to believe that this rate of advancement will continue in the future, allowing for advances that we have yet to conceive.

AI is a hot topic right now, and it’s on its way to becoming a critical component of how things work in the future. AI apps abound, from self-driving cars to predictive text to chatbots, and we’ve only begun to scratch the surface.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is the name given to a worldwide network of interconnected devices. The Internet of Things has many applications, and society can use it for sophisticated tracking and diagnostics.

Digital technologies are here to stay. They are deeply ingrained in our culture, and the benefits they provide are far too numerous to be overlooked. The rate of change can accelerate as computer chips become smaller and more powerful.
As a result, the school and other organizations must consider how they will adapt to these changes. This isn’t a one-step procedure. We need to change the way we educate our children. New technologies and digital innovations must be recognized and passed on as they emerge.

STEAM GREEN

I believe that outdoor activities are extremely important, so we make certain that our students spend time outside every day. I’ve included a variety of activities to help us learn about the world around us. We experimented with using nature to teach other subjects like math and arithmetic, Romanian language and poetry, and the arts.

6 February 2022

We first met with a specialist at the Science Museum in the neighboring town to plan the activities. He spoke to us about his love of nature as well as his research and studies.
She informed us about Astrobiology, a new science attempting to explain the existence of life as we know it outside of our planet. To do so, scientists must combine traditional sciences like physics, chemistry, biology, and others to first define the concept of “living organism,” then define the conditions of life, and finally develop technology to study this organism. Then we realized we’d have to go to the Planetarium to better understand these ideas.

On April 26, 2022, the Technoworld Association invited us to participate in a series of activities at the Planetarium, which we accepted. The Universe is the eternal and infinite world. It`s everything that surrounds us, everything that exists, seen or not seen. The Universe is, for man, the greatest mystery of its existence that is waiting to be discovered. We will be able to conduct more research projects thanks to astrobiology. We’ll follow the science program and learn about the latest achievements in space exploration through multidisciplinary collaboration. Our activities will continue, with many other schools across the country already registering for World Space Week 2022. I intend to involve students in interesting activities in order to make them want to discover the seen and less seen parts of the Universe. Astronomy is useful because the greatness of the phenomena they`re studying gives us the opportunity to understand nature better and to bring it closer to our needs. Responsive learning of the Universe is a huge opportunity for the students to enhance their general knowledge and their abilities. The Universe can become an interesting point in all the school subjects, even in the extracurricular ones, involving kids emotionally and changing mentalities.

On April 12,

the 5th graders presented us with their 3D Tinkercad projects for building lunar shelters.

February-April

Throughout this time, I was conducting experiments. We cultivated plants in greenhouse conditions because it was cold outside, testing plant cultivation in extreme conditions and thinking about how we could sustain life on other planets. The children were upbeat and concluded that people had faced difficult times in the past and had survived. Nature is where we call home.

To save fossil fuels and protect the environment, we traveled by electric train and on foot. We looked at the flora and fauna, observing the close relationship between them and the impact humans can have on them. It had been days of exploration and discovery, observations, and connecting with nature and colleagues. It was the most interesting science, Romanian, music, and math lessons because I deepened my understanding of wildlife, sang, read directions and posters, and counted everything I could: seconds, children, animals, spring flowers, and so on. Students also learned how to use the PlantSnap and Magnifier & Microscope (Cozy) mobile applications. This is how the research and observations could continue.

“Whoever dares to teach others must never stop learning.” Dana, J. C.

February – April

This campaign is an excellent opportunity to convince us that a teacher must prepare for future interests and, in order to be useful to his students, he must first learn what suits them and their needs.

I participated as a trainer in two STEAM webinars (February-March) organized online and face to face, in which I presented the opportunities of a STEAM career to teachers from another region of my country, providing them with materials and conducting practical activities.

As a T4 Education Ambassador, I attended the Teacher Tech Summit on March 26-27 and learned about solutions for continuing to learn in good conditions from colleagues around the world as well as other education partners.

As a STEM Career Adviser, I attended two webinars where I learned about good practices from other European colleagues, as well as new ways to improve teaching and the support that stakeholders can provide.

The Science Education Conference was held from April 27 to April 30, 2022. We were inspired to participate by the theme. “Perspectives on STEAM education in the future. “Lessons from the crisis.”
It was a fantastic opportunity to learn from experts. Under the title “Our Interesting STEAM Journey,” I was invited to present the two projects that were awarded by European Schoolnet.

STEAM CAREERS

1. HOW DO WE PREPARE CHILDREN TO BE INNOVATIVE?

STEAM  has been linked to early learning, according to studies. Children are better prepared for school and future careers if they learn these skills early on.
The best part about STEAM activities is that there are no correct or incorrect answers. Without a predetermined outcome, the child learns to think of solutions on his own.
This allows the fear of failure to be released. Children explore rather than memorize answers as they experiment and look for the correct answer.

2. THE JOBS OF THE FUTURE

According to a study released by the World Economic Forum in October 2020, in the next five years, approximately 85 million jobs will be replaced or partially replaced by a combination of humans and robots, while 97 million new jobs will be created. Work will be displayed throughout the world.
According to researchers, future trades and new types of jobs will be based on a combination of humans, robots, and algorithms. At the same time, they claim that change will result in better jobs and a better quality of life for all.

The students were given the option of choosing a STEAM career.

To stimulate their interest in these jobs, I posted some videos with today’s specialists. They learned what their job requires, what studies are needed, and what competencies they must acquire from them…

https://steamit.eun.org/researcher-eu-institution/

https://steamit.eun.org/systems-engineering-manager/

https://steamit.eun.org/researcher-agroecology/

https://steamit.eun.org/bioinformatician/

https://steamit.eun.org/data-scientist/

After seeing those of these and the TOP OF THE FUTURE SKILLS – after the World Economic Forum’s “Future of Jobs Survey 2020”

Analytical thinking and innovation
Active learning
Problem-solving
Critical thinking and analysis
Creativity, originality, and initiative
Leadership and social influence
Use of technology
Technological design and programming

Strength, stress tolerance, and flexibility
Reasoning and finding ideas
Emotional intelligence
User experience (EU)
Orientation on the services offered to the client
Systems analysis and evaluation
Persuasion and negotiation skills

I concluded that thorough training in the fields of STEAM is required.

3. THE RESCUERS

We decided with the students to get to know our rescuers, those who risked their lives for their fellow human beings: doctors, firefighters, and soldiers because this was a particularly difficult period of the pandemic. They learned a lot about first aid and how to save people’s lives in difficult situations. They went to the Military Unit to see the tools, equipment, and vehicles used by rescuers. Living 30 kilometers from the Ukrainian border was difficult because their families and these rescuers assisted the refugees. We learned how to protect ourselves from fires, floods, and earthquakes, as well as how to be “Friends of the Savior.” Then I did school applications, drew, and learned how to call 112 in an emergency. It was an interesting experience for the kids

4. MEETINGS WITH STEAM SPECIALISTS

To motivate the children, we invited two IT specialists, AI, who demonstrated what they do and how a typical day at their job goes.
Ana Maria Stancu, subtitled “Mother of Robots,” was the first to introduce us to the robots built at ROBO HUB and what everyone can do with them. He explained to the kids how they could become robot builders as well as what they would need to know.

The ESCU robot walking the Nero-robot robot captivated them.

Nero can go to the field to observe plant growth and announce any difficulties that come in real-time. Then they saw robot drones with a variety of functions, such as sanitizing hospitals or acting as hosts for various events. The fifth graders are already practicing for the “Creativity Olympics,” and the younger ones are convinced that they need to do more Math. Watch the videos of our meetings below:

Gabriel Anastasiu, a professor of computer science and robotics, was the second guest. It included instructional robots as well as a professional 3D printer. We set out to familiarize pupils with 3D design, which will be crucial in the future. The pupils understood the purpose of this 3D design activity, which is also known as “3D design” and is sometimes the first step in the 3D printing process. Making a three-dimensional model, digital representation of objects, and subsequently 3D printing are all part of the 3D design technique. Various products, from the little medical prostheses to replacement components for various machines or robots, museum objects can be restored, and even industrial structures or space shelters can be created using this method. Through the 3D printing process, a talented designer and high-performance software can produce practically any object we can imagine. Look at our videos below:

5. STEAM EDUCATION AND WE

“Curiosity is the cure for boredom.” Curiosity has no medicine… ” Dorothy Parker

STEM education teaches students more than just science, technology, engineering, and math concepts. It encourages children to learn through scientific inquiry.
Hands-on learning with real-world applications aids in the development of a variety of 21st-century skill sets. With my husband and colleague Mihai Lungoci, I designed and implemented all of the electronics and robotics activities in the Optional course. His enthusiasm for electronics and robotics is passed on to his students.

With my fifth-grade students, I continued the series of discoveries and constructions. In optional activities, I taught electronics and robotics. I first built rovers, and cars with solar panels, using kits, using the “reverse engineering” principle. The school encouraged us to learn and provided us with the necessary materials. After that, we attempted to create other recyclable materials. Each prototype construction went through the design, construction, testing, and presentation phases. They provide us with a great deal of satisfaction and encourage us to keep going.

And because we want another generation to be interested in STEAM education, I began teaching coding to my youngest students. In addition, I developed the first educational robot. They are very curious about technology and want to learn more about it.

WHY IS EARLY STEAM EDUCATION REQUIRED?

Students learn to:
* to ask questions like a scientist
* to design like an inventor
* to build like an engineer
* to create as an artist
* to think like a mathematician…
PLAYING LIKE A CHILD

Thank you for all of your challenges. We appreciate your commitment to our education and the materials and examples of good practice you provide. We will ensure the Specialists of the Future by working together.

YOUR PASSION-MY CHANCE-OUR BETTER FUTURE

T(I)ME TO EU(S)TEAM

THE CURRENT CONTEXT

Our society is constantly changing as a result of the progress of Science and Technology. The transition to high technology is done at an extremely fast pace. Our way of learning or having fun, playing sports or traveling has changed. We can choose the way we shape our mentality, but the way we educate our children must change. Many existing jobs are disappearing and at the same time, there are other jobs that need new skills – STEAM skills. These are a “passport to a better future”. The demand of employers for such a workforce is stringent, high, and continues to grow. We are looking for those who can adapt quickly to all these changes and can successfully face the challenges.

THE CHANGE – STEM EDUCATION

For us, the change has started with the STEAM Education approach. That is the chance we offer children to simulate their future, to prepare for it. It`s time to find the best solution to combine ”the useful” with ”the pleasant”, to help as many children as possible acquire the necessary skills. We felt amazed and motivated by all the opportunities that this type of education brings. Therefore, we will not let the interest and curiosity of children in the use of technology die out. We want to show them that learning can continue even in unforeseen situations – such as those of the last year.

THE SECRETS OF SUCCESS

Everyone understood that we must always find solutions for students to prepare according to the times they live in, connecting them to their future which will be better if they are educated in this way, developing their Communication, Collaboration, Creativity, Critical thinking skills. In addition to these, essential for quality education are the teacher’s passion for the discipline they teach and their love for the children they educate. This is the type of teacher who can capture children’s attention, motivate and inspire them.

THE BEGINNINGS…

We have been enjoying the opportunities offered by the STEM Discovery Campaign this year as well, but also the webinars, courses organized by European Schoolnet, because there are ways to upgrade the way we approach teaching assessment. We learn and pass it on to the student.

Who we are?

      I have developed in class, in the past 2 years, Robotics and Space Sciences as an optional for the little ones. We are ”Little Engineers” class(10-11 yrs). I have always been trying to find out what they thought about these activities, to discover their interests and passions to continue learning. When I read the feedback, I understood that these interesting activities are excellent opportunities to promote the development of a healthy and innovative mentality, to socialize and cooperate by training them by valuing their positive character traits, helping them to adapt and integrate.

Why STEAM?

By showing that I care about them, engaging them in activities that interest them, I motivated the students to want to learn more. That’s how they got involved in their own learning. We encouraged their natural curiosity about the world around them, stimulating their desire to discover, their ability to understand, their power to think. This increases their chances of adaptation.

OBJECTIVES OF THE ACTIVITIES THAT LEAD TO THE TRAINING OF STEAM COMPETENCIES:

Science

– by engaging in interactive activities, learning how scientists solve problems using the scientific method. Children need to learn how to observe, collect data and get involved in a scientific project.

Technology

– by learning programming, acquiring the skills needed to solve problems, participating in interactive activities of computational thinking

Engineering

– by discovering new ways to solve the challenges of today’s society, which involves participating in “hands-on design” activities and training technical skills to help them in life (achieving things that benefit society). Engineers are the creators of everything from biology to computer programming. Engineers make the world a better place.

Art

– by making the connection between art and technology integrating programming, analysis and design, construction, and medicine with electronics, robots, and machines of the future.

Mathematics

– by developing calculus-based thinking, focusing on problem-solving, applying real-life solutions, challenging students to make logical connections between causes and effects, practicing thinking about understanding, and making complex choices.

REQUIREMENTS – PARTNERSHIPS

For us, it is an extraordinary chance to organize these STEAM activities that are part of the times we live in. A teacher must prepare his students for the future, to allow them to train their necessary skills, to value their potential. The teacher is one of the main role models for students. With the activities we carried out, we registered for various regional, national, and international competitions, often managing to obtain very good results that brought us sponsorships – materials necessary for the good development of the activities. This year, TME Education joined us to offer us electronics and robotics kits, giving children great joy. They are giving them the chance to put what they learn into practice.

THE TEAM

I teamed up with my colleague and husband – a music teacher, very passionate about electronics, but also with principals, parents, other educational partners – who came to tell us about their passion for Science, helping us carry out these activities. We made a plan, according to the proposed goal, we set the objectives, we prepared our materials and in February 2021, we were ready to start.

THE WORLD OF ROBOTICS

The world of robotics is fantastic and very attractive for children. Here, they enter with pleasure and learn with interest about the Science that designs, builds, controls, and operates robots. We remembered that at first, they only knew them from SF stories about robots, then we saw them in STAR WARS and now they have become a reality, we meet them everywhere. In our house, they help us wash, clean or cook, and even to cut the grass in the yard !! And it’s not just that.

THE PURPOSE OF ROBOTS

They help doctors in the investigations they do but also help them perform difficult operations. Robots also fly and guide pilots, sail with sailors, build cars, and all kinds of construction or fight in dangerous areas. Also, they accompany musicians, connect people, ignite our imagination and give life to ideas. Robots now do all sorts of things: from the smallest components of a computer to rockets exploring outer space or the depths of the seas. How can you not want to know more, to do more ?!

THE CREATION PROCESS

To be able to create a robot you need STEAM skills. To create it, specialists from different fields – inventors, builders, artists, engineers… study the world around them, observe, experiment, create, analyze, test. We designed and thought about our activities in the same engineering manner.

MATERIALS AND SUPPORT

This year, starting with month of  February, once we return to school, we also started activities within SDC 2021, encouraged by all the initiatives of European Schoolnet and the slogan of the “Sustainability and Citizenship” campaign. We were helped by the kits received following a sponsorship from our partners at TME Education. They appreciated our previous activities and wanted to support us to continue learning. TME Education wants to create its own educational kits that facilitate the first steps, as well as the continuation of the road in the field of electronics. To the joy of the children, we used the received materials in activities.

We can’t wait to discover the next TME educational kit based on the Arduino board, which allows you to get started in Arduino Uno.

ECHO MEETINGS I- The painter – The 8 of February 2021

STEM OR STEAM?

STEAM  is a new approach to the STEM philosophy that recognizes the value of the arts both in the harmonious development of the individual and of the human society. So our first guest, on the Zoom platform, was the painter Daniel Zlota.

THE GIFT

From him, our class received a package from sunny Spain. We first met him last year and took our first online painting lessons. We were trying to guess what’s inside. There were all kinds of answers: from toys, sweets, robotics kits, VR glasses, painting tools … and then a weak voice said “a picture”. Evrika !! The painting was accompanied by good thoughts and wishes. We were very happy and grateful. We visited with him the personal workshop and the virtual exhibition https://danielzlota.com/ and we looked with admiration at the beautiful paintings that are part of famous international collections. Then we wrote a text about a painting that fascinated us. Each child tried to write the story behind the painting. We read our texts to the painter, to see if anyone managed to get closer to the truth…

THOUGHTS FROM  A FRIEND

The meeting with the painter Daniel Zlota came at the right time to help us in our development. Children are in great need of real models to inspire them, to motivate them, to determine them to build great dreams. He taught us important life lessons from his personal experience: “Success is a sum of failures that you try to overcome by working,” he told us. We understood that if you want to do something and you don’t succeed, it’s just a passing thing, maybe it’s just that you haven’t studied and worked hard enough yet. People with a winning attitude do not give up and fight for what they want. Everything is in our power. And another very important thing we remembered is that passion is one of the secrets of successful people. Only when you like what you do will you be able to reach your true potential.

ECHO MEETINGS I I – The robotic specialist –The 17 of February 2021

 To arouse their interest, we scheduled an amazing meeting on Zoom with the “Mother of Robots” – Ana-Maria Stancu, the founder of an extraordinary project – ROBOHUB, because we want to know many things about robot construction and function. She managed to find a solution, in these difficult times, to come to the aid of medical staff and prepared robots with UVC light that can enter contaminated and semi-contaminated spaces to inactivate viruses and bacteria. https://youtu.be/vuaa04x2zTU.

ROBOTS – OUR FRIENDS

We understand that robots are our friends because they FEEL (collect data about what is happening around them) – THINK (how to use the information to take the next step) -ACT (do something influencing the world around them). “She welcomed us” at ROBOHUB as well. After introducing us to the beautifully arranged space that also represents the “robot house”, she introduced us to the younger brothers of ESCU – whom we already knew from other science and technology workshops in which we had participated – of robots designed for educational purposes, to familiarize children with the basic principles of programming, stimulating the development of logical thinking, creativity.

LET`S MEET ROBOTS

One by one, the biggest ones appeared: Alpha – the robot who amused them and encouraged them to do sports, Elena and Amelia – the kind robot girls, who can work in restaurants to serve the pretentious customers and, of course, the famous ESCU- the most evolved of them- who was already our friend. He was applauded many times on the open stage for his convincing answers, which were also full of sensitivity. Truly, he has an unmistakable charm and knows how to answer the rain of questions from the children. If the more elaborate answers were well documented on Wikipedia or Google, we don’t know where some of them came from…

EMOTIONAL MOMENT WITH ESCU

The most emotional moment was when they received the answer to the question “Who do you love, ESCU?” – “I love all people!” and two hearts appeared in his eyes. I found out what the role of the “red button” is and how you can stop something unpleasant from happening, that he is polyglot, that he loves all colors… Time has passed unnoticed and, full of optimism and joy, we said goodbye to our hosts.

ECHO MEETINGS III- The succes man – The 26 of February 2021, On Zoom platform

To be a good STEAM specialist, you need a person with a harmonious personality, who shows the strength of character, courage, and self-control, good connoisseurs of oneself, involved in all kinds of activities and projects, and with good scientific training. We met on Zoom with Cătălin Stoica, who has a success story -due to his experience as a trainer, writer, TV manager.

THE JOURNEY– World of the Self

We had been ready for a long time to embark on a journey into the miraculous world of the Self. Children have grown up and needed encouragement, advice, motivational stories, but also reasons for joy and optimism. We wanted to get to understand ourselves more easily, in order to better relate to others. In an atmosphere of intense emotion, with a lot of mastery, Cătălin took us through the “Land of Happiness”, opening the windows of our mind, but especially the gates of the heart.

WE LEARNED MORE

He taught us recipes of happiness, of a fulfilled life – which do not lack LOVE, FORGIVENESS, PERSEVERANCE, TRUST, GENEROSITY, RESPECT… but also how to work to build a bright future or how to form a successful mentality, going through and over failures and taking it over and over again. In this way, they found out for themselves what delights them, what inspires and motivates them, what matters to them, but also to others. It was worthwhile to join hands to help them discover the important aspects that define them. They are more focused on the present and need models. We now know that happiness foretells and precedes a life full of accomplishments. We could apply what we learned in our activities.

THE WORLD OF ELECTRONICS

– weekly 3.04- 28.04. 2021, on Wednesday,
– face-to-face meetings and on the Zoom platform

Weekly, throughout this period of the STEM 2021 Campaign, we organized various STEAM activities aimed at the field of electronics, robotics, 3D printing. The introduction of electronics in the fascinating world has been long-awaited. It is the first step in exploring and understanding the Sciences. Today it is present in all areas of human activity. From the ordinary light bulb that dissipates our darkness to the mobile phone and laptop that we can no longer part with.

THE PURPOSE OF THESE COURSE

The purpose of these activities (and mine of course) is to help young school children understand electronics easily. Many believe that to learn electronics you have to be super smart, an adult and know math and physics at a higher level. The students found that it is possible to learn electronics easily at any age. I made sure in every lesson that this course is understandable to children. Electronics can be explained in an intelligible way, with a language simpler than that used in specialized books. I tried to use language appropriate for the children’s understanding, using comparisons or demonstrations from their known universe whenever necessary.

https://youtu.be/o94SkJ4SJVQ-  The Electrotechnist Engineer

ELECTRICITY – ENERGY SOURCES

The first lessons focused on children’s understanding of the behavior and control of electrons and conductive media through which electricity flows. Then I presented and demonstrated how electricity sources work, those that “animate” electrons in all electronic circuits (experiments with lemons, apples,…)

We sparked a discussion about the importance of fruits and vegetables in everyday life, even in different areas. In the introductory activity, we studied their composition. Then followed a short session of questions and answers about electricity, how we can get it, what are its uses, and we will discover the similarities between how batteries and accumulators work and their equivalence in nature.

FRUITS AND VEGETABLES – NATURE ENERGY SOURCES

By using different fruits and vegetables, the children made sources of direct current similar to batteries and operating on their principle. In addition to fruits and vegetables (apples, lemons, potatoes, onions), they also used two different conductive materials (Cu and Zn) as electrodes. They inserted a piece of copper wire and a galvanized nail (Cu plates and galvanized sheet) in the opposite parts of the fruit, thus obtaining the positive element Cu and the negative element Zn for the energy source. They were careful not to connect (touch) the Cu and Zn plates (inside or outside the fruit) so as not to produce a short circuit.

THE EXPERIMENT

Due to the acidic or saline environment of fruits or vegetables, the electrons on the Zn plate will migrate on the Cu plate, thus producing a potential difference between the 2 electrodes, a difference that they will highlight with the help of the measuring device, set to 2 V DC. By measuring the voltage at each fruit, they entered in a table the values ​​obtained, then connected in series several “elements” to obtain a larger potential difference. When they reached a voltage of ~ 4-5 V, they connected an LED with the anode to the Cu electrode and the cathode to the Zn element of the source obtained by serial connection of several fruits. They found that the light gets switched on, and hence the existence of electricity from the source.

THE POWER OF FRIENDSHIP

Forming teams, they connected in series as many fruits and vegetables as possible to obtain maximum tension. At the end of the experiment, they noticed that when removing the plaques from the fruit they were cleaned and explained that this is the effect of the action of the acidic environment in the fruit which removed, by chemical reactions, the oxide layer from the surface. At the end of the activity, they washed the metal plates abundantly with water and threw the fruits away.

https://youtu.be/5BzIOMnyCX4 – 10 V

https://youtu.be/krIzW_k1kRw  -10V (Fruits and vegetables energy)

SMALL SCALE SOURCES OF ENERGY

Then it was our turn to demonstrate the simplest process of obtaining electricity using human force by spinning a dynamo. They connected an LED to it and noticed that the LED lights up, and its light intensity increases as the rotational speed of the dynamo increases. I explained to them that, by increasing the rotation speed of the dynamo, they increase the potential difference by intensifying the circulation of electrons in the circuit and implicitly this determines the increase of the light intensity of the LED.

https://youtu.be/m7Wb1zJTwQ8-  The  Dynam

LARGE SCALE ENERGY SOURCES

For starters, I showed them a film https://youtu.be/Giek094C_l4   Renewable Energy Sources. I presented to them the different ways of producing electricity by converting other existing energy sources in the environment. Ex: electricity is produced by a generator that is rotated by wind, water, thermal energy (produced by burning fossil fuels or nuclear energy. The evolution of science has made it possible to obtain electricity and other methods – capturing solar energy and transforming it into electricity using solar panels or chemically due to batteries and accumulators, geothermal, of the tides… Then we discussed the different gadgets that surround us and that we use every day in our lives (light bulb, TV, refrigerator…) It was concluded that each uses a source of energy to function.

WE BUILT BATTERIES

By forming teams, they put into practice how to obtain electricity by chemical method. Using copper coins, aluminum foil and vinegar-soaked cardboard in which the salt dissolved and placing them alternately in the form of a sandwich, we obtained a direct current source similar to commercial batteries. They were delighted to see what happens. That increasing the number of layers and the tension increases. Then they came up with the idea of ​​grouping together and joining their sources in series to get more tension. From here, they extracted the rule that by connecting the sources in series, the potential differences are summed.

https://youtu.be/JseCBdJ1hN8 –  Our battery voltage

https://youtu.be/ml_zLC1GesM – We build a battery

THE BREADBOARD AND THE FIRST CIRCUIT

In the following lessons, we explained how to use experimental boards for electronic circuits (breadboard).

For a start, they got acquainted with the most important passive electronic components (resistors, capacitors, diodes), series and parallel connection of resistors. They were taught to recognize the values ​​of the resistors by color code or to read the value inscribed on them (on larger resistors). Then they discovered how to connect them in series and in parallel and how to calculate the values ​​obtained by connecting them in these ways. They also learned the formulas for connecting in series and in parallel, following the experimentation, on a breadboard, of a simple electronic circuit through which they found out how an LED, a capacitor and two resistors behave.

https://youtu.be/2B9lXMiSamQ  –  LESSON 1( the resistor)

https://youtu.be/JN_4PrFvllw – LESSON 2 (the multimeter)

https://youtu.be/H1IydhyeE50 – ENGINEER REBECA

https://youtu.be/wOFGSPplYcU- ENGINEER SEBI

BREADBORD – CIRCUITS  II

The most awaited and intensely lived moment by the children was the realization of a circuit. The connection of the components on the breadboard was made according to the scheme presented on the board and taking into account the polarity of the source, the capacitor, and the LED.

EXPERIMENT RESULT

We then created a circuit that also contained an electrolytic capacitor, thus understanding the role of the “tank” of electricity when we interrupt the source. The circuit consisted of a direct current source, 2 resistors, an electrolytic capacitor, an LED, and a switch. When the switch was operated, the LED lit up. When it was released, the children noticed that the LED did not go out suddenly, but maintained its brightness for a certain period of time. This is due to the capacitor that was charged when the switch was operated, and when it was released it supplied electricity for another period of time. The children were then instructed to remove the capacitor from the circuit and observe what happens when the switch is released (the LED turns off suddenly).

LEARN AND GIVE AWAY TO ANOTHER

There were children who succeeded in the experiment in the first attempt. Then, they helped the others who made mistakes in connecting the components on the breadboard, always increasing the number of those who managed to make the correct circuit.

https://youtu.be/BvxpUlHb0oU –  A good circuit(Beni –Teo)

https://youtu.be/cjb1HD5pMDA- The Breadboard

https://youtu.be/j1NyIT6TJKU-  The Capacitors

https://youtu.be/ZEKSdTzB4-A- The successful project

3D DESIGN AND PRINTING-

– daily 5.04 – 9.04,

– face-to-face meetings and on the Zoom platform

Starting with 15.02, I participated in two interesting courses offered by the European Schoolnet Academy- “AI basics for schools” and “Aerospace in Class”. That’s how we found out about the ESA and Airbus Foundation Contest “MOON CAMP CHALLENGE” . We started to prepare to participate.

PREPARATION

Because the extended Easter holiday came, we continued these learning activities by taking them to the next level. We designed shelters on the Moon on the Tinkercad platform (on which we already had accounts), using all the lessons received from the specialists from the School of Science and Technology from Măgurele-online participation, starting with July last year, when we started the first course. There we first heard about the 3 axes – XYZ and how we can change its dimensions along the 3 axes. Then we learned how to rotate, move and resize 3D objects. Now we know how to use the worksheet and the commands or the objects we could use, the view pane, the + and – buttons, and what a projection or perspective means.

THE CONTEST

After a brainstorming session, reading and watching materials about the Moon, and doing some simple accommodation exercises on the Tinkercad board, we moved on to building shelters. They worked in teams of 2 or 3 synchronously and asynchronously. Hence, they discovered the facilities that the Tinkercad platform offers, respecting the requirements of the contest, using their imagination and creativity to the maximum. They also used the Zoom platform to be able to communicate more easily. Interesting works came out that brought us a lot of joy and satisfaction.

https://youtu.be/1DPqNgIWT-0 – One activity with 3D printer 

https://youtu.be/SKX_4HnpBII – Teacher for my coleagues-3D printing

https://youtu.be/4HbCYpZne-g-      1. The teacher

https://youtu.be/fvu7x9HIOUw     2. Darius (teacher)

https://youtu.be/c7JPls773SQ Rebeca (teacher)

https://youtu.be/3OeUDEN45OI- Filip (project)

https://youtu.be/r5zbyrCZ4Po – Moon Camp Base (Team ”Smart Engineers” Ligia- Ioana- Teodora)

LITTLE ENGINEERS IN ACTION –daily 12 – 16.04, face-to-face meetings and on the Zoom platform

Knowing that engineers make the world better, we also tried to find a solution to the Earth’s problems. We thought a space mission could help us. Thus, we tried to build our robots to find the right solutions. We are following the engineering steps in our investigations. We wanted to build our own robots to which we could entrust space missions. Mankind has dreamed for centuries of conquering space. There are now many missions planned and developed to conquer this frontier as well. And we dream about it !! We would like to make a trip by car, but not on Earth, but up in the sky to reach the boundary between the Earth’s atmosphere and space, at the Karman Line !! We’ll be there in an hour. Who knows if we don’t succeed one day?! …

TESTING OUR ROBOTS

We thought of building new robots to help us !! Specialists in different fields: inventors, builders, engineers, researchers, artists … study the world around them, observe, experiment, create, analyze, test. We follow the example of specialists. The students managed to build and program robots (Lego We Do, Maqueen, UFO robot). We used the kits we had. For now, the Maqueens programmed with the help of the micro: bit pocket computer can only follow the light, change their route, speed, but we do not give up our dream. We will use our power and imagination to find creative solutions to problems that are difficult to solve. “If you don’t daydream, time stands still!” O. Pamuk

https://youtu.be/8BwiFLsaYg0 –    The little inventor 1

https://youtu.be/wY55NLLSzlA  –    The little inventor 2

https://youtu.be/X_Iez_ssJWo – Our space rover

https://youtu.be/aV3iOS-T6qM-   Moon rover test

https://youtu.be/fEcQ7CXT9Rs- Robot- my friend

WAY OF WORKING

For each activity, the children work in teams of two due to the pandemic situation. They carry out the project together and bring improvements, giving free rein to creativity and imagination, learning to collaborate. We had help in carrying out the activities: parents, colleagues, partners, sponsors. In more complex projects or competitions, they learned to take on a certain role in the team.

They are structured on given topics. Each activity has prepared instructions and worksheets, students having at hand the kits. As the projects become more complex, the constructive solution is a challenge for imagination. The result – STEAM knowledge is gained.

https://youtu.be/sZyb9NSbrkU-  In ESA Laboratories

FUTURE ACTIVITIES

Furthermore, we will learn to use the active components (transistors, integrated circuits, small circuits for automation…). We will continue to improve in 3D printing, building robots with Lego WeDO, DFRobot kits, a micro bit. We will then start learning to program using the Arduino development boards that our TME partners have provided us with. The activities will include topics anchored in everyday life, in which students will understand various concepts. They will complete and deepen their knowledge, will be able to be creative, will share with colleagues their own visions and experience. Will be challenged to solve concrete problems using arithmetic calculations, experiments, tests, etc. like engineers.

THOUGHTS FOR THE END OF THE SDC 2021 CAMPAIGN

STEAM education is a chance to capitalize on the interest that children show, visibly. This created a stimulating educational environment, developing collaboration and communication within the group, and led to increased self-esteem. It is a way to channel their curiosity, their thirst for knowledge towards learning and the spirit of initiative preparing them for a lifelong learning. In this way, children become creators of technology, not just consumers, prepared for the future. STEAM is a type of education that brings reality into the classroom, connecting different subjects. In this way, they can change the world around them, the themes of STEAM projects are always based on real situations in daily life. It gives children greater control over learning.

  • All the visuals belong and were provided by the Author – Attribution CC-BY

OUR INTERESTING STEM JOURNEY

Author: Daniela Lungoci

STEM education is based on four important pillars: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. The interesting and diverse activities are excellent opportunities to foster the development of a healthy and innovative mindset, to train students, and to inspire tomorrow’s inventors. This is a quick overview for any teacher who is interested in trying the STEM approach in the classroom. Giving children the opportunity for STEM education is a chance for a better future!

Why STEM Journey? We need to acquire skills in:

Engineering by discovering how to get inside the mind of an engineer, which implies participating in hands-on design challenges. Engineers are creators in everything from biology to computer programming. Naturally, they need technical skills to succeed. The engineers make the world a better place.

Computer Science is also a big part of the process. Children must learn how programmers deal with problem-solving by participating in interactive computational-thinking activities.

Natural Sciences, hence the importance of getting involved in interactive activities. This way, students learn how scientists solve problems using the scientific methods. Children must learn how to observe, collect data, and complete a science project.

Furthermore, just like real space scientists, students explore, observe, and investigate celestial bodies. They come to the realisation that space is bigger and even more fascinating than they may have ever imagined.

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