#SAMSuccess story: STREAM on wheels! Driving tailored learning experiences in Gresham-Barlow School District
District: Gresham-Barlow School District (GBSD)
Educator: Roger Hay (Technology and Innovation Instructional Coach)
Grades covered: K-8
Challenges and goals: Meeting GBSD’s STREAM concept goals, supporting and guiding teachers who are new to STEAM, engaging students with hands-on work
He chose: Creators STEAM kits, STEAM Classroom kits, Maker kits, and Learn to Code classroom kits
In a spread-out school district like Gresham-Barlow, getting high-tech equipment onto school campuses is a challenge. When GBSD was building its STREAM Labs (Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Arts, and Math) and The Tomorrow Bus (a new mobile technology lab traveling between the different campuses), SAM Labs was on hand with the right tools, training and support.
Thanks to the versatility of SAM Labs products, we helped Roger meet science, technology, engineering, arts, and math concept needs providing excellent value and diverse learning experiences for a huge range of students.
Let’s see what Roger had to say…
Roger on SAM Labs’ tailored approach: “One thing I loved about the SAM Labs blocks and working with the company was that they’ve designed their product to focus on the needs of the user. Instead of building technology that you have to teach users how to use, SAM Labs asks educators what they want and what will work for them.
That’s really what you need from a partner – to discuss what fun you want to bring to a lesson, and for them to ask how they can tailor their offering to meet your needs.”
Roger on his and students’ reaction to SAM Studio: “One of the big reasons we bought into SAM Labs was because it definitely gets that hands-on connection with kids. For example, the new SAM Studio allows you to do freehand rather than block coding.
I love that with the SAM Studio software, you can just take little icons of the hardware (like an LED light or motor) and then simply draw a wire to connect one to the other. This is a great way to virtually recreate what happens with the physical hardware, and kids can really jump into that and start peeling back the layers of coding, so we’re super impressed with that.”
On the magic of play in learning: “It’s like selling the idea of a magic show to kids – it’s smoke and mirrors where they get hooked into the idea of a fun project – but in reality they’re learning! They’re applying mathematics or physics but it’s all under the guise of play. If you can take away as many obstacles to that play, kids have fun coming to class each time.”
Click here to hear more about the project in the full N the Numbers podcast with Roger, Morten Hagen (VP Product & Customer Success at SAM Labs) and host Jarvez Hall.
If your school or learning environment would also benefit from tailored support from SAM Labs, you can review our entire suite of solutions or get a FREE trial of SAM Studio. If you’re an existing customer and need assistance, visit our Support Center.
Rosie is a writer and storyteller with a passion for tech and learning, with nearly a decade’s experience writing for small tech startups and large brands alike. In her free time she enjoys walks with her pet greyhound Boris, singing in a jazz quartet and making new music.