Today the 7th grade Mechatronics class at St. Raymond really elevated the bar nationally in STEM education by reaching a very important milestone. The project includes the use of commercial stepper motors that power so many of the real-life machines around us from 3D printers to the actuators on spacecraft. To do this students in 7th grade were successfully working with the same hardware that students in upper level high school and college programs use.
None of that is important - at all. These students are young. There is plenty of time to learn this stuff as they get older. The technology is going to evolve so far by the time they would see it again in a high school or college level program. So why do it?
Grit developed from a 15 week project mixed with an emerging confidence that there is no corner of the technical world that can not be mastered and used to improve the human condition is both the motivation and result of this project.