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Media Release: 6th Graders Learn Robotics at Brand New 2020 Bond-funded STEAM Lab

6th Graders are receiving a STEAM education through Denver Public Schools

Sixth graders at Northwest Denver’s Bryant-Webster Dual Language Elementary School have been enjoying their new Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) lab. Technology Teacher Craig Herrera leads the charge of young engineers who are being invited to experience VEX, an educational robotics program.

“The importance of getting STEAM in the hands of minority students, and female students, can not be overstated,” says Mr. Herrera, who teaches computer science at Bryant-Webster. “I have two girls who have taken off with these projects, underrepresented students need exposure to this, without this program they might not have been introduced until high school. Some kids might not realize that they love this stuff, until they’re exposed to it.” 

In 2020, Denver Public Schools voters passed a bond that allowed a provision for the addition of a new STEAM lab at Bryant-Webster, The project was completed in 2022. Bryant-Webster is one of three district-wide STEAM labs out of this bond designed for critical grade levels.

VEX is an educational robotics program that assists teachers with tools, curriculum, and professional development. As part of the 2020 bond package, DPS began offering a grant for teachers who were interested in the program. Teachers had to apply for an extracurricular robotics unit. Mr. Herrera did just that.

Now, his 6th graders are planning on going to a special exhibition, to play robot soccer with the robot they have built through the program. They’ve been practicing their soccer skills in an after-school club. Their goal is to be prepared for the DPS STEAM Expo on April 29.

On building the robots, 6th grader Felipe said “It was a really good experience,” and 6th grader Jesse concluded, “Teamwork makes the dream work.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: DPS is providing this video footage for your use.


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