Christel Thompson is the principal of Pyron Elementary School in Clarksville, Arkansas.
Project Lead The Way challenges me and Pyron teachers to work outside our comfort zone! It would be simple to do what we have always done, but because Pyron teachers wanted to bring the real world to their students and engage them as never before, we chose to implement PLTW Launch last school year.
Since then, teachers who have been teaching for over 20 years have told me, "I wasn't sure my students would learn much from this PLTW stuff, but I am convinced. They are learning, staying engaged, and having fun."
One parent told our second grade teacher that his daughter had to be told to come to dinner because she didn't want to stop working on her program for her game after she was introduced to Grids and Games in the classroom.
With these incredible lessons in the classroom, our students are able to transfer their learning to other areas as well. For example, our students have participated in our regional STEM Olympiad the last two years and brought home first place in robotics and third place in egg buggy and catapult challenges this year. These challenges represented real-world problems. It is my goal and hope that one day some of our PLTW Launch students will be able to build upon both the skills they’re learning now and their early interest in STEM, change the world, and solve important problems!
PLTW’s blog is intended to serve as a forum for ideas and perspectives from across our network. The opinions expressed are those of each guest author.