Our Programs and Partners
We currently offer intensive teacher training followed by a weeklong, STEM-robotics course that is taught by the local teachers alongside The Community Bots educators. Our introductory Fun with Robotics course trains middle school girls in the fundamentals of robot design and programming using LEGO Mindstorms NXT software and equipment. The course also exposes the girls to leading robotics companies and their innovative products and highlights women who have distinguished themselves in the STEM-robotics field.
After The Community Bots was launched in the spring 2016, we provided our first STEM-robotics course in July 2016 at the Good Shepherd School located within the Inwood neighborhood in New York City. The Good Shepherd School serves a mostly Latin American community. We completed our first international program in Nicaragua in June 2017. We are working closely with NicaPhoto, which serves families living in one of the poorest barrios in the country.
Our third Fun with Robotics program took place in New York City in August 2017 at The Young Women's Leadership School of Queens, which serves a diverse community in the Jamaica neighborhood. We continued to grow our partnership with The Young Women's Leadership Network in June 2018 by offering our fourth program at The Young Women's Leadership School of Brooklyn. Later in the summer 2018, we completed our fifth program at the Politecnico Fundacion MIR (School for Girls) run by MIR Charities, which provides education and social services to underserved families living in the greater La Romana area of The Dominican Republic.
We plan to return to Nicaragua during the summer 2019 to partner with Students of Granada, which provides resources and facilitate partnerships to meet the academic, health, and infrastructure needs of educators and students in the Granada area. We will launch our program at Escuela Carlos Bravo, the largest public school in Granada serving 1,000 students. The program will also include a computer literacy element based on the National Ministry of Education's (MINED) tech curriculum that will begin during the summer 2018. We will also plan to offer our program during the summer 2019 in Nicaragua at Mi Escuela Generadora de Cambios in Estelí in the northern part of the country.
We are fortunate to partner with St. Joseph's Academy, an all-girls school in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The school, through the leadership of John Richardson, Co-Director of Technology, has donated refurbished laptops to NicaPhoto, Politecnico Fundacion MIR (School for Girls), and Students of Granada. Moreover, John and his colleagues joined The Community Bots at NicaPhoto in Nicaragua to deliver donated laptops and to help develop NicaPhoto's computer lab. We are deeply appreciative of St. Joseph's Academy's ongoing generosity and support.
Some of our partner programs have initiated FIRST LEGO League (FLL) teams. We invite you to watch the video below from First Lego League which reinforces our mission and the importance of preparing young women for future careers in STEM fields.
WHAT IS FIRST LEGO LEAGUE?
Tomorrow’s innovators practice imaginative thinking and teamwork. Guided by adult Coaches, FIRST LEGO League teams research a real-world problem such as food safety, recycling, energy, etc., and are challenged to develop a solution. They also must design, build, program a robot using LEGO MINDSTORMS® technology, then compete on a table-top playing field.
It all adds up to tons of fun while they learn to apply science, technology, engineering, and math concepts (STEM), plus a big dose of imagination, to solve a problem. Along their discovery journey, they develop critical thinking and team-building skills, basic STEM applications, and even presentation skills, as they must present their solutions with a dash of creativity to judges. They also practice the Program’s signature Core Values.