CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Several organizations in Charlotte are partnering to bring free Science Technology Art and Technology, or STEAM, experiences to nearly 1,500 students in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools district.
Next month, kids head back to school. No matter what the plan looks like in response to COVID-19, Digi-Bridge is working to make sure kids stay engaged up until it’s time to head back.
The tech-focused non-profit is partnering with Lowe's and Collins Aerospace in Charlotte to distribute shoeboxes filled with Science Technology Engineering Art and Math experiments to 1,450 CMS students.
“When students went home from school it was all a digital experience so they lost that opportunity to work with different items and explore it through doing," Sherry Sample with Digi-Bridge said.
Sample said the shoeboxes will include a wide variety of things including Legos, dominos, Pictionary cards and a chemistry project.
To gets hands-dirty, Lowe's alone is distributing 750 boxes to students that will include a seeds germination and growing project.
Randy Alexander with Lowe's said the goal is to get students away from their PlayStations and give them a physical opportunity to learn something.
Aeronautics is another avenue kids can explore. Collins Aerospace is making sure the remaining 700 shoe boxes include engineering projects.
“Knowing we’re able to help kids that may not have access to computers over the summer or camps it’s really a valuable thing we can do for the kids in our community," Carrie Reeder with Collins Aerospace said.
All boxes will have instructions in English and Spanish to overcome language barriers, and thanks to Novant, the shoeboxes will also include facemasks.
“The goal would be to pique their interest in some of these different topics that we're exploring and for them to say oh this is cool I want to learn more about this," Sample said.
Digi-Bridge Summer STEAM Kits will be distributed this week through CMS school partnerships and Freedom School Partners.