Sunday, February 19, 2012

Learning Outside of the Classroom

Marlin Elementary students enjoyed a fantastic week of activities outside of the classroom.

Our students were featured in the local newspaper for their participation in the SeaPerch robotics competition. You can access the article here http://dsfcbloomington.org/seaperch.html

The Marlin teams represented the school, MCCSC, and themselves very well all day. We had four teams participate in the regional competition at DePauw University. One team qualified for the state competition! This was our first time to participate in the event and we didn't know what to expect going into the day so qualifying for the state competition was beyond our expectations.

The first event of the day was an underwater obstacle course which involved the students maneuvering their ROVs (remotely operated vehicles) through five hoops on their way out and navigating back through the hoops on their way back. Teams were divided into heats and the top four times of all the heats were given trophies. Team Marlin 4 took second place overall with a great time, barely missing out on a first place finish.

The second event was a sprint race half way across the pool and back. Once again, each team did a fantastic job and the times were all very close. Team Marlin 4 took second place again, finishing just behind the Tri-North middle school team with a solid time in their heat.

During the last event of the day all of the teams made a presentation of their work to a panel of judges. I was able to sit in on the presentations and I was very proud of how our students handled themselves.

While we were at the SeaPerch competition our local Boy Scout pack was at school working hard to complete a service project for our school. They received a grant to purchase lumber to build five picnic tables for our school. The picnic tables will be used for students to enjoy some class work outside when the weather becomes a little warmer. They are also a place where students gather during recess to hang out and enjoy their friends' company. I saw the tables yesterday and they look great!

We had a great week outside of the classroom, which shows that not all learning takes place inside of a building. Sometimes it's in a pool and sometimes it's outside building something for others. I'm very proud of our students, staff, and parents for their commitment to education, no matter where we find it.

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