Written by Jess Paniszczyn
As the Tech Wizard program’s Bridge to STEAM summer camp drew to a close for Irving ISD students, the youngsters and their parents gathered at Senter Recreation Center for a ‘Stemtacular Fun Day’ on June 29. Among the festivities, students watched a fire safety demonstration, learned about forestry and water conservation and had the opportunity to have their eyes examined on a mobile vision van.
Members of the Mid-Cities Chapter of The Links Incorporated have worked with the program for the past two years as mentors and supporters.
“Last year it was a STEM summer camp,” said Avarita Williams, a Links member. “This year, it is the Bridge to STEAM summer camp. The kids worked on science, technology, engineering, arts and math.
“Last year when we were working on our STEM program we did an art feature where kids learned that art is a part of architecture, designing cars and buildings. Someone has an idea that has to be sketched on paper then the mechanics are developed by a design engineer. A lot of different things all stem from art and from the vision you have.
“The 4H program teaches kids practical lessons they can do hands on and apply. Some of these kids may have never been very close to a cow. Today they not only got to see a Jersey cow, they were able to see it being milked. They now know the difference between a milk cow and a meat cow. We’ve held events in the past where kids have learned how to plant trees and shrubbery.
“We want to show kids there are alternatives in life and different career paths. We want to help them make wise choices when it comes to studying, food nutrition and giving back to the community. If they see people working in the community, they will want to do that when they grow up.”