At Pine Grove Middle School in East Syracuse, NY eighth-grade students are preparing to land ROVER robots on the planet of Mars. Their Mars might be simulated, and their ROVER robot might be made out of LEGOs, but this three month-long project requires students to work collaboratively and learn skills in design, building, and programming to successfully pull off their Mars landing.
The students are led by two of their S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, English Language Arts and Mathematics) team teachers, Jason Fahy and Tim Patterson. The Pine Grove Middle School is an innovation platform school within the Empire State STEM Learning Network (stewarded by the SUNY Office of the Education Pipeline) and a founding member of the Central New York Regional Hub of Empire STEM, which also includes SUNY College of Environmental Science & Forestry and Onondaga Community College.