Whether building a robot from scratch or working alongside a teammate to troubleshoot a pesky programming glitch, students in Hewitt’s middle school robotics program are design-thinkers and problem-solvers who learn from their successes and challenges.
SteAm and Maker Education
Innovators, Inventors, Leaders
Research shows that girls have higher interest and persistence rates in STEAM fields when they are afforded ample opportunities to tinker and build. By introducing design challenges in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics classes starting in the lower school, we prepare our girls to embrace robotics with an eagerness to explore, a willingness to build upon failure, and an openness to constructive feedback. Our K-12 interdisciplinary and collaborative approach to STEAM ensures that Hewitt girls graduate well on their way to becoming the next generation of innovators, inventors, and leaders.
Hewitt students explore, experiment, and play with technology, computer programming, digital fabrication and maker tools, and robotics at every stage of their academic career.
Estefania Suquilanda, Hewitt’s lower school tech support specialist, has always had a passion for repairing gadgets. “My goal is to pass on the repair bug to Hewitt students from kindergarten to twelfth grade. Whether dealing with a cracked phone screen or an argument with a best friend, knowing how to repair things is an important skill to have.”
Hewitt kindergarteners approach their role as Hewitt's newest community members with fresh eyes, deep curiosity, and lots of enthusiasm. Throughout their first year of school, kindergarteners focus on identity explorations, learning about their larger school community and their own role in that community.
Hewitt fifth graders tapped into their skills as mathematicians, problem solvers, coders, researchers, and writers to plan road trips across the United States. With only a few specific guidelines about budget and mileage, students were encouraged to make independent decisions about routes, finances, food, and lodging as they planned elaborate trip itineraries.
On any given day, visitors to Hewitt’s O’Hara Family Innovation Lab might smell the burnt wood of the laser cutter, see traces of sawdust left over from a woodworking project, or hear the hum of a 3D printer bringing student designs to life.
On the first day of school, the entire first grade participated in a team building activity designed to encourage planning, collaboration, problem-solving, and creative expression.
Faculty member Erik Sommer discusses his summer art installation at Fastnet, an alternative exhibition space in Red Hook, Brooklyn.
As part of their Programming and Robotics course, Hewitt students in 9th and 10th grade collaborated with 3rd graders to design unique robot toys.
- Graphic design and digital art using Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator
- Milling with Carvey
- 3D printing and design with Tinkercad
- Tinkering with gears and circuitry
- Robotics with VEX IQ, VEX EDR, and Arduino
- E-textile design with LilyPad
- Physical computing with Makey Makey and Micro:bit
- Wood and acrylic cutting and etching
- Computer science classes in design, circuitry, building, and programming robots, and software creation for computers and virtual reality