STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) plays an integral role to pupils' education at Parkside; it is integrated throughout the curriculum at all years, as well as being a core focus for many inspiration and engagement events across the school. Parkside is strongly committed to inspiring pupils with regards to the world around them and the future role that they will play in exciting ventures and possibilities that might not be invented yet. Therefore, at the core of our STEM delivery is the desire to create fascination, engagement and aspiration within the STEM sector, giving our pupils the opportunities to be inspired to play an active and creative role, and to see the links between wider aspirations and their studies in school.
As a result of our commitment to STEM, we are happy to have created business links, provide inspiration days and to focus our pupils on their roles in society when they leave Parkside.
Girl Tech 2022
On Friday 29th April 2022 14 year 8 girls went on a trip to the Millennium Point where they explored all things tech and future careers. #GirlTechWM is a Millennium Point funded project, delivered by Ahead Partnership. The Millennium Point Trust is a Birmingham based charity whose aim is to increase engagement in science, technology, and digital themes, to ensure people are equipped with the relevant skills and knowledge needed to live, work and connect in the modern world. This day-long experience saw young people from across the West Midlands take part in interactive workshops, guest speeches and a hackathon to meet and ask female role models in the tech industry their questions, as well as give them a hands-on experience of what working in this sector is all about.
Leaves on the Line
On Friday 25th March, all year 5 pupils took part in a STEM workshop "Leaves on the Line" presented by National Rail. Often our railway lines have disruption due to leaves and other debris preventing our trains from running smoothly. The workshop posed the problem of creating a product which would allow the trains to run more fluidly along the model tracks. The pupils created a substance which they tested for viscosity and electrical conductivity to decide if it would solve the "Leaves on the line" problem.
All pupils thoroughly enjoyed the task and worked brilliantly in small teams to solve the problem.
Primary STEM Challenge
On Tuesday 8th March, we welcomed STEM Works to deliver the Primary STEM Challenge. Pupils were given a box of KNEX and challenged to design and build a robotic arm to sort recycling. The design criteria specified their creation must:
- Be strong, sturdy and stand unsupported.
- Have a moving part (mechanism).
- Move in at least one direction.
- Separate a least one type of recycling (paper, plastic or metal).
Tomorrow's Engineers Week
8th to 12th November
World Space Week
4th to 10 October 2021
To acknowledge World Space Week this year, all pupils were set the challenge of creating a class collaborative solar system. Throughout the week, with the help of Lailah (a year 8 prefect), pupils were given a variety of facts about the planets in our solar system. During Thrive, each class was challenged with creating the artwork which incorporated these facts. The work produced was incredible; well done to all!
22nd June 2021
Three Year 5 pupils completed the first Knex task in our after school club. They were challenged to build a bridge to connect two desks. At the end of the given time, they tested the strength. Next week we will be progressing onto stronger structure techniques.
Severn Trent Live Lessons A Great Success
On the week commencing 22nd February 2021, children across the school and at home took part in some fantastic live sessions lead by Severn Trent Water. They learned all about how clean water gets to us and even about what they do with poo once it gets flushed down the toilet! Children were educated about the 3 Ps that are safe to flush and what should not be flushed down the toilet or washed down the sink. We all made pledges to change bad habits and received some certificated too. Well done Parkside!
Take a look at all the brilliant entries to this years competition.
Bethany Camp 7SC
You created 4 A3 sheets of detailed ideas.
You labelled your designs and included a detailed description!!
Isaac 5HP and Bel Hodgkins 8KN
Your model was well thought out,
a modern design and had a high quality finish!
Isla McLundie 6KW
Your intricate design had many futuristic features.
I loved that you thought about how your building would run and ways to be Eco friendly.
Imogen Spalding 5JP
Your model had looks fabulous.
I like that you could see inside and the name “Skyline University” is a fantastic name.
The best model goes to….
Eva Bray 5SN
Your model included so many amazing, futuristic and well thought out features. I particularly liked the water storage unit that fed into the allotment plot. All the aspects of your model demonstrated a great deal of time and effort went in to this.
The best paper entry goes to…
Jessica Ball 7SC
You created a whole folder of information about your futuristic school. You included maps, labelled design sketches and detailed explanations about how your school would look and run! I particularly liked the underground pathways and library bus. I can clearly see this design took you an incredible amount of time and effort!
Trip to Bletchley Park 2019
On the 3rd December 2019 we took a group of students to Bletchley Park in Milton Keynes. Bletchley Park, once the top-secret home of the WWII Codebreakers is now a vibrant heritage attraction whereby the children got the chance to see where the Wrens would have worked in the huts and had a go on a real Enigma machine.
The children explored code breaking, internet safety and problem solving challenges. We all had a fantastic day!
Knex Workshop - 15th October 2019
A selection of Key Stage 2 pupils took part in a Knex workshop hosted by STEM works. They faced the challenge of designing and building a new automotive vehicle with the following design criteria:
Faraday Challenge 2019
Parkside took part in the Faraday Challenge in September, held at St. John's Middle School. There were five different middle schools from the Bromsgrove area taking part. It was run by the IET, which is one of the world’s leading professional societies for the engineering and technology community. The Faraday Challenge gave students the opportunity to research, design and create a product for a genuinely tough engineering problem. The students used their creativity and technological knowledge to successfully solve this engineering problem. The students had a very rewarding learning experience and were a credit to the school.
Marine Engineering Pathway Tour
On Thursday 19th and Friday 20th September, Parkside welcomed the Marine Society and Sea Cadets into school to work with our Year 8 pupils, with their Marine Engineering Pathway Tour. Our pupils participated in a two-hour hands-on workshop which looked at the fundamentals of engineering through a real-life marine engineering scenario. Pupils had to design and build a ship which was stable in water to carry as much cargo as possible. They tested their ships to then discover which teams had succeeded in carrying the most cargo whilst staying afloat. The workshop coordinator was amazed by the high scores that our Year 8 pupils achieved through the days, commenting that Parkside pupils broke several records for the most cargo to be carried. The pupils thoroughly enjoyed the experience and were enthused about engineering as a result.
Trip to Worcestershire Parkway
On Monday 8th July, a selection of 18 pupils from across the school had the pleasure of visiting the new Worcestershire Parkway Train Station. As the station is still within the construction stages we initially met with the project manager from Worcestershire County Council. He shared with the pupils the design stages and job roles that have allowed the project to get to this stage. We then boarded the coach to the train station and met the lead builder from the construction team who talked in more detail about what facilities are in the station and what tasks had been completed. The pupils thoroughly enjoyed the trip and found the information extremely useful - particularly those who are hoping to go into the engineering or construction industry as a career.
STEM Hub Staff
On Friday 28th June, many members of the STEM Hub came to our school to deliver three hands on workshops to Key Stage 2 pupils. The three workshops were linked to Space and included: ‘Mission Starlight’, ‘Our home in Space’ and ‘Craters on the Moon’. Additionally, pupils had the opportunity to talk with a STEM ambassador from Worcester University about careers and the pathways available to them in the future. Finally, Worcester Bosch were also at the event to share with pupils the Engineering opportunities available when they leave school. The pupils thoroughly enjoyed the day and many suggested they would like to be considered for future Engineering opportunities that might be organized. All of our guests on the day were extremely complementary of the school, staff and especially the pupils. They loved how interactive, polite and enthusiastic they were throughout the day.
Autistic Base - STEM Group collaborative working
On 9th April a group of STEM experts were invited to the Den, to support the pupils with creating a robotic hand.
A month ago, 20 pupils were selected to take part in a STEM workshop linked to space technologies. The pupils were to create a robotic hand using card, art straws and string. Following this workshop, 10 experts were identified and trained to deliver the workshop to the Den pupils and support them in creating their own robotic arm.
The workshop was a tremendous success with all pupils benefiting from the communication and team work skills needed to be successful.
Parkside Pupils awarded First Place at STEM Finals
The girls were up against more than 30 other schools from across Worcestershire and their teamwork shone as they recreated their Knex model. The judges commented on their amazing communication skills and their detailed, thoughtful planning.