Morehead Planetarium and Science Center and Caldwell County Schools are teaming up to make science more accessible by increasing science offerings for Caldwell County schoolchildren. This collaboration will give Caldwell students access to high-quality science programming at no extra cost to the students, the families or the school system.
This collaboration is made possible thanks to a $37,000 grant from the Google Inc. Charitable Giving Fund at Tides Foundation. Google has a data center in Caldwell County.
“We are enthused about the innovative arrangement to combine Morehead Planetarium and Science Center resources and personnel with Caldwell County Schools' summer camps scheduled at Patterson Science Center and through the WrapAround program,” said Caldwell County Schools Community Services Director Libby Brown. “We can’t thank Morehead and Google enough for giving our students the unique opportunity to participate in science and technology activities.”
This initiative adds summer science activities to the Wrapround camps for K-5 students and will create a middle school summer camp experience at Patterson Science Center. Morehead and Caldwell schools will also host a science night at Patterson Science Center and hold teacher training sessions on the Morehead curriculum.
Children will feature hands-on activities that encourage them to think like scientists and engineers. The initiative will features a range of topics from astronomy to computer science.
"This will be a very cool program for us," said Morehead Director Todd Boyette. "While there are a variety of sciences in the program, we're especially excited to incorporate computer science into a number of the activities. Some of the children will have the chance to do simple coding to control rovers. Others will get to explore littleBits. And that's just to name a few activities."
littleBits are small circuit-boards that snap together with tiny magnets and are programmed to perform a specific function. They are described as an entry point to computer science in the same way as LEGOs are an entry point for engineering for many children.
“We’re really happy that this opportunity was solidified,” said Morehead Director of External Programs Crystal Harden Adams. “It means that students will have engaging science readily available, which can positively impact their attitudes and aptitude toward science.”
Students registered for Wraparound camps will automatically be included in this program.