Engineering For Kids is a program that brings science, technology, engineering, and STEM, to kids ages 4 to 14 in a fun and challenging way through classes, camps, and clubs. We’re thrilled to highlight this program as one of our Chapters and learn more about how they’re incorporating littleBits into a creative and dynamic curriculum.
We interviewed Alyssa Choraszewski, official littleBits Chapter leader and owner of Engineering for Kids in Dearborn, MI to learn more about how she’s using littleBits.
Tell us a little bit about your space. What makes it special?
Our space is special because we do not have our own physical space! We bring the littleBits to the students–wherever they may be. We have hosted littleBits classes in school cafeterias, school libraries, school classrooms, recreation centers, and even the staff meeting room at a dentist office! Because the environment is different for each workshop, we bring all of our own materials so that we have some consistency. We bring our bits in the workshop box and have all of our disposable supplies in bags and boxes.
How have you incorporated littleBits into your programming?
We have run several programs that focus just on littleBits. However, parents and kids really love to take our traditional Engineering For Kids classes and so we put a new and exciting spin on them by adding littleBits into the mix. For example, last year we hosted a Halloween themed electrical engineering workshop. Students completed a couple lessons from our Engineering For Kids electrical engineering program, but also had the opportunity to play with littleBits and make a Hack-o-Lantern to take home.
Describe the most memorable moment from your last littleBits event.
Our last littleBits event was during the bitOlympics. Students were also completing lessons from our Engineering Olympics Summer Camp and while the students enjoyed the engineering challenges, their true creative juices started flowing when littleBits were incorporated in the lessons. Students that were hesitant to approach previous engineering challenges suddenly became confident in their ideas and creation. Witnessing the creativity paired with confidence was wonderful. That is what engineering is all about–taking one material and giving it a new purpose. littleBits really makes that type of learning and teaching approachable for everyone.
What’s been the most exciting part about running a Global Chapter in your space? What advice would you give to other Chapter leaders?
Being a Global Chapter has brought me a great deal of support. It is not very often that the company you purchase materials from wants to be part of your success and your vision… but littleBits does! I truly feel like the other Chapter leaders and the team at littleBits are focused on bringing littleBits into every household because of their dedication to STEAM education and I am happy to be a part of that mission.
My advice to other Chapter leaders is to incorporate littleBits as much as possible. Don’t limit yourself to “littleBits themed events.” Make every class you do an event! And make every class you do have littleBits sprinkled in. littleBits excite students and even working with them for only 45-60 minutes is enough time for students to crave littleBits themed events.