May/June 2018: Robotics Meets Auction Napa Valley
The busiest month of the year in education
May is always the busiest month of the year in education and it’s no different for us at NapaLearns. This month was full of action including the InnovatEd™ Conference, Stanford’s Girls Math Day, the UC Davis annual robotics competition and then, we kicked off the first weekend in June with Auction Napa Valley.
Read on to see what robotics and the annual Auction Napa Valley have in common!
Napa Valley Unified Student Teams Prevail at Robotics Competition
On May 19th, 80 Napa Valley Unified School District (NVUSD) students from five schools competed in the annual UC Davis RoboPlay Challenge and RoboPlay Video Competition. More than 500 students from Northern California, representing 119 teams from 46 schools participated in the Challenge. We are so proud of the 19 American Canyon Middle (ACMS) and High School (ACHS) teams who earned a combined total of 20 awards, nearly half of the 46 awards given. The all-girl ACHS team won the Statewide RoboPlay 2nd Place Award and the all-boy ACHS team took the Statewide RoboPlay 3rd Place Award in their respective divisions.
First year that elementary schools participate
This was the first year that Redwood Middle School and Valley Oak High School participated and it also marked the first year that NVUSD fielded a team of 5th graders from Donaldson Way and Canyon Oaks elementary schools. As one student said, “Imagine the potential if we start robotics in elementary school instead of middle school!”
These new schools were able to participate thanks to NapaLearns expanding the C-STEM program into two more schools this year. To date, we have invested more than $155,000 in the expansion of the C-STEM program and we have plans to double that over the next two years.
C-STEM Students Shine at Auction Napa Valley
NapaLearns was honored to join Auction Napa Valley this year. Students who have participated in the C-STEM program were on-hand to demonstrate their robotics skills and answer questions from auction attendees as they made their way into the big tent.
Outstanding results for C-STEM students
Beyond learning coding, robotics helps students avoid taking remedial math when they get to college. Too often, students who dream of a college degree are waylaid because they must retake entry-level math. With the C-STEM program, they learn algebra and geometry while programming the robots to accomplish prescribed tasks. They acquire the mathematical concepts by applying them instead of sitting through lectures and completing worksheets. The results have been nothing short of astounding: 95% of the students in the Math 1 robotics class at American Canyon Middle School exceeded California state standards on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) test and 37% of them achieved a perfect score!