All-Girl Teams to Build LEGO Robots at UMass Amherst Computer Science Learning Event on Saturday, April 28
April 25, 2012
DATE: Saturday, April 28, 2012
TIME: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; 3:45 p.m. is best for team robot competition
WHAT: Girls’ team workshop to build and program LEGO NXT robots
WHERE: UMass Amherst Computer Science Building, 140 Governor’s Drive
Dozens of middle school girls will converge at the University of Massachusetts Amherst on Saturday, April 28, for the third annual "Girls Connect," where they will learn how to build and program LEGO robots.
Eight teams of girls ages 9 to 13 in grades 4 to 8 from western Massachusetts towns including Amherst, Ashfield, Holyoke, Greenfield, Shutesbury and Franklin County with their adult coaches and chaperones will apply real-world math and science concepts to spark the girls’ interest in computing and technology. High school students from Girls Incorporated of Holyoke and college students serve as mentors and roles models. All team robots complete a series of missions to end the day. Each team receives an award for its accomplishments.
"Girls build confidence in working together and solving problems. They also have a lot of fun," says Renee Fall, program manager of the Commonwealth Alliance for Information Technology Education (CAITE), which is organizing the event. "They get introduced to computer science and engineering concepts, meet female computer science majors as mentors and role models. Many get inspired to pursue computer science and technology and become a part of FIRST LEGO League."
In addition to CAITE, the event is co-sponsored by the UMass Amherst computer science department, LEGO Education, FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) and Girls Incorporated of Holyoke.
FIRST LEGO League was founded to engage children in meaningful learning while helping them discover the fun in science and technology.