Knob Noster High School

Knob Noster High School is located in central Missouri approximately 10 minutes northeast of Whiteman Air Force Base. As stated in our building mission statement, “We equip all students for success through quality teaching and learning.” However, in providing a structured environment for student learning, we are unable to reach many students who enjoy tinkering and creating. Our building greatly needs a Maker Zone to provide students an educational place to collaborate, create, design, build, and invent outside the confines of the traditional classroom. A Maker Zone is not a place where students do as they are told; instead, it is a place where questions are posed and students work to answer original questions as well as any new questions that may arise. As a STEAM-certified school, the Maker Zone would fit well with our already interdisciplinary learning environment. Allowing students to escape the structure of a classroom will encourage them and provide them with opportunities to be innovative problem solvers and better employees in the future.

The focus areas for our Maker Zone will include robotics and coding. With the grant, we would be able to purchase the following items: Mindstorm Legos, littlebits, Arduinos, Cubelets, Hummingbird Robotics Kits, and other general supplies for building machines. We would also use the grant money to purchase a large television to mount on the wall in the Maker Zone where students can brainstorm projects together and solicit help from others. Community Challenges would also be posted through the television screen. We want the room to be highly interactive and adaptable to student needs.

In addition to the space being open throughout the day for class use and individualized learning opportunities, students would be encouraged to form clubs that would utilize the space and materials both before and after school. These clubs will invent items to compete in local, state, and national competitions. We will also invite members of the community and Whiteman Air Force Base representatives to visit the school and demonstrate the applicability of these tools in engineering professions. Individually, students could also use their inventions in scholarship applications. The opportunities for our students and the community would be endless. Initially, the students will be presented with 30-day challenges provided by community members and school faculty to familiarize them with the materials in the space, and these challenges will eventually lead the students to create their own challenges as they become more comfortable.

The students and faculty of Knob Noster High School would be honored to receive this grant as it would greatly impact the culture of our high school building. Without the grant funding, this shift toward an innovative, problem solving culture will not be possible.

 

Becky Wood

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One Response to “Knob Noster High School”

  1. good essay. Thanks for sharing

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