Fourth-grade student Arun Suthaharan helps classmate Layla Solhdoost work on the “capstone” celebration of the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme. The project showcased the fourth graders’ learning and interests. This year, teacher Angie Gerhan’s class at Bassett Elementary focused on “What can you explore and make today?” Students brainstormed, questioned, researched using books, videos, and internet sources, listened to speakers, experimented and took action on their ideas. Recently, Gerhan’s class visited Scott Kutz’s and Adam Purdy’s Technology & Engineering classrooms at Westlake High School to work with different technologies. Students from the high school TechMates Club, Robotics, and Know Your Home classes worked with and mentored the elementary students to help build birdhouses and demonstrate robotics, architecture, design, additive manufacturing technology, laser engraving, computer graphics, airbrushing and other engineering tools. The Westlake PTSA sponsored and supplied all the lumber and fasteners for the birdhouses. They used western red cedar in the construction process since it’s easy to work with and holds up well outdoors.

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