A Note From A Parent – Karen Z.
Robin and I just received a note from Ariel’s mom and were happy to read that her daughter, like our other students, greatly benefited from the BSE approach of having students take the driver’s seat when solving problems. While going up against these challenges is tiring, the resulting accomplishment truly belongs to the student. Thank you Karen!
Our daughter, Ariel, was both exhausted and exhilarated (it’s possible) when she came home every night during the six-week 2011 BlueStamp Engineering (BSE) summer program. Exhausted, because Robin, David and their assistants kept Ariel thinking hard about the engineering challenges she faced every day. Exhilarated, because of the true sense of accomplishment Ariel felt as she faced and resolved these challenges. During the school year, Ariel attends a rigorous academic high school, but has never been as consistently challenged intellectually as she was during the BSE program. In order to build her robotic arm, Ariel had to master on her own many disciplines: from mechanical design to firmware and software coding, electrical engineering and testing. Significantly, the BSE program required Ariel to perform like an engineer in a corporate setting. Each day Ariel began by listing her goals for the day in an engineering notebook, and each evening she marked what was accomplished and what additional efforts were required during the next day. When challenges and unanticipated problems arose, Ariel would consult with the BSE staff, but the task of solving the problem was left to Ariel. She greatly enjoyed the way the BSE teachers would video record her triumphs after she had resolved a particularly difficult problem. She also shared in the joys and disappointments of her fellow “engineers” as they proceeded with their own projects. We could go on and on, but the bottom line is that Ariel had a great time and gained tremendous confidence in her ability to achieve in a challenging environment. Kudos to Robin, Dave and the rest of the BSE staff.