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PCS Edventures' Erika Liebel, teacher and curriculum developer, partnered with Melanie Bemis, a Wood River Middle School educator, to pilot Drone Designers: Exploring STEAM Careers in her Leadership classroom. Students worked through the engineering design process, mirroring the roles of world-renowned drone production teams at Verity Studios. Students took on the real-life roles of choreographers, costume designers, project managers and more as they orchestrated their final performance.
Pilot programs such as this are a critical part of PCS Edventures’ curriculum development process. After all, how could we be the experts in hands-on STEM education without getting hands-on experience ourselves? These tests ensure that our programs drive student interest and provide educators with user-friendly resources to support a smooth implementation.
From newspaper articles to radio interviews, the results and feedback from this pilot program have been phenomenal. Orders for Drone Designers grow daily as we continue to see schools adopting drone programs. Other STEM education organizations are even incorporating these UAVs into their professional development programs.
Since 2020, Idaho STEM Action Center has offered Drone Designers training to Idaho educators during their summer professional development programs. Their Drone Designers grant program has reached over 58 sites, many of which are rural.
To date, this mini-drone career exploration has reached over 10,000 students across the US.
The response to the pilot was so positive that Melanie’s school board approved Drone Designers as an ongoing elective course. In our latest Teacher’s POV interview, find out what Melanie has planned for her new drone-focused elective that will incorporate Drone Designers and Ready, Set, Drone!.
Behind the Scenes: Students taking on their individual creative and technical roles.
Gemma Gaudette, an award-winning journalist and host of Idaho Matters, sat down and talked with curriculum developer Erika Liebel, teacher Melanie Schrader and 7th-grade student Freya Colvill to discuss the ins and outs of Drone Designers. To get the inside scoop, check out the full article or listen to the interview below!
Listen to the recorded interview:
Our Drone Designers catches the attention of Eric Valentine at the Weekly Sun. Students learn coding, costume production, and more before they take to the sky.
Performing drones have arrived in Idaho and students are behind the controls. Karen Bossick of Magic Valley brings you the latest.
Journalist Roland Lane of the Idaho Mountain Express gets a quick sneak at what 7th-grade students could do with their drones.
Student with Lead Designer role creating drone costumes.
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