Region 7 ESC offers robotics opportunities for teachers and gifted students in grades 1 – 3 using the LEGO® Education WeDo™ Construction Set. Robotics at this level provides these students with opportunities to explore and investigate simple machines, learn iconic programming, design schematics, incorporate math, literary, language, and science, solve problems through creative problem solving strategies and design and create working robotic models. Students can showcase their skills and design during the WeDo™ Celebration held annually.
Region 7 Education Service Center offers robotics programs for gifted students in grades 4 – 12. At this level, students are afforded opportunities to explore concepts associated with robotics through cross curricular connections. There are two different competitions, a design competition in the fall and an arena competition in the spring. Participation in the design competition is not required to compete in the arena competition. Teams may choose to participate in the spring arena competition but not submit a competition board for the fall design competition.
Innovative Inventions for grades 4 – 8 provides gifted students with an opportunity to participate in the inventive process. As a result, these students will gain an understanding of the processes of innovation and creative thinking and develop an appreciation of the inventive process through the creation of an original, feasible idea. The investigation will culminate in a student invention showcase held annually at Region 7 Education Service Center. During the event, students will also participate in Contraption Construction. Contraption Construction encourages creative problem-solving and cooperation among teams of students to solve a simple task by designing a complicated contraption.
The Imagination Fair
The Imagination Fair provides gifted students in grades 1 - 3 the opportunity to showcase storytelling in an interactive format. Prior to the event, these students research various forms and genres of storytelling, learn about stories from other cultures, and discover the impact of storytelling throughout history. They then either choose a story or create their own story to tell during the Imagination Fair. A professional storyteller will begin the day telling interactive stories and later will work with a select group of students to help them develop and refine their storytelling skills to share with the Imagination Fair participants. To culminate the event, students participate in a hands-on creative problem solving activity.