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Team Fighting Spiders Win STEM Award

Tulsa Public Schools knows how important it is to provide students with science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) resources and opportunities. In fact, with the passing of the 2021 Bond for Tulsa Public Schools, there will be $11.5 million dedicated to providing our students with 21st-century STEM learning opportunities.

STEM is a growing field that can provide many students with scholarships and jobs. MacArthur Elementary School is hard at work providing students with STEM opportunities. 

For the third straight year, MacArthur students participated in the Storm Sanctuary Challenge. The event is hosted by US Cellular, who partnered with JASON Learning, to virtually bring together over 200 5th -10th graders from Chicago, Tulsa, and Milwaukee to present their ideas on issues.

This year's challenge centered around communication and its importance during times of natural disasters. Students at the event learned how cell phones work, the importance of cell towers, and how to prepare for real-life disasters while staying connected to friends and families. 

MacArthur's team representatives said: “Team Fighting Spiders, made up of three fifth-grade students, did exceptionally well and won a STEM award at the competition. The team's solution to the problem included cell towers that are protected underground during natural disasters.”

Not only did the team work together to create an excellent presentation and win an award. The students also learned more about using technology to communicate and collaborate.

"This year was a challenge due to everything being virtual. Everything was a new adventure with many bumps and turns," said sixth-grade teacher Jessica Wolfe. Wolfe is the teacher of Team Fighting Spiders and helped guide them through the competition. "While in virtual, students utilized the breakout room function in Zoom to work with their group. They worked collaboratively in Google docs during the research phase and used Google Slides to present their idea and show how it would work. They then created a video presentation of their idea." 

This challenge engaged students in science, technology, engineering, and math and was designed to get them excited about STEM programming.

"We are committed to helping provide quality STEM engagements for students to learn about the world around them while inspiring them to prepare for the jobs of the future," said Deirdre Drake, Executive Vice President and Chief People Officer for US Cellular. "Congratulations to all the students and teachers who pivoted to online learning this year and found ways to get and stay engaged."

MacArthur Elementary is focusing on inspiring life-long learners and setting students up for success. Tulsa Public Schools is working to support its students in each school by providing resources. For information on STEM resources that the 2021 Bond will provide for Tulsa Public Schools, click here