Sunday, August 14, 2011

Passion FIRST.

"I am not gonna say 'science is rock-n-roll,' but science rocks." ~Jack Black.

For me, the celebrities of FIRST are the students. Always have been, always will be first. They are the passion, they are the drive. The students are what keep me interested and vested. You know that I believe it is about the robots... the robots designed and built by the students.

2102 Team Paradox is a high school robotics club that was started by students, for students. It is supported by mentors, teachers, parents... all volunteers. It is supported by sponsors, big and small... all generous. And 2102 Team Paradox supports and mentors other teams, like 3128 Aluminum Narwhals, and FLL, Mexico FRC teams, and up and coming Team San Diego teams. 2102 Team Paradox's Spirit is award winning, and their Engineering passion is Inspiring!

"For too long we have put a spotlight on entertainment only."

ChickenBlog has had the spotlight on FIRST 2102 Team Paradox. The students and their dreams, their dedication to learning have inspired a lot of focus and attention from this blog. Why? I post about Team Paradox, about robotics, about STEM STEAMM: Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math, and Music, because I want to promote a fervor, and passion for education. I want to showcase what students do and what they can do when they have opportunity.

We cannot say 'children are the future,' and then close metal shops, cancel technology programs, remove music and art from schools. The 'future' is not a far off distant destination. The quality of our future is determined today, this moment, this school year, this Sunday afternoon, and the children need our support and confidence now. They need space to work, places to play. They need open studios, tools, workspace, and they need the genuine interest and support of all of us to give them time, information, encouragement, resources, support. It can be a hot meal, a safe environment, and facilitating inspiration.

The children may be 'the future,' but they need us to act on their behalf today... not to do everything for them, but to give them the chance to meet challenges and earn success. Now is the time to put the spotlight on education, on students who want to shine in science, technology, engineering, art, math, and music. Now is the time to recognize what is being accomplished by young people and to open more doors, give more time and attention, money, praise, resources and focus... so that these brilliant, capable young people can secure the future with their good ideas. They are inventive. They are resourceful. They are capable, and we should be celebrating them.

The future is looming. It's zooming toward us! It may seem intangible, but we can make it better by acting now.

What can I say? I get pumped about learning, about listening to children share their ideas, about saying, "Yes, I want you to try that, go there, build it, make it, share it, break it, try again!" So, I keep posting about it. I keep hoping one more person, one more company, one more sponsor will catch on, get sparked, and give a student an opportunity, a nod of encouragement, the spotlight. It's an awesome thing to see students embrace the opportunities and excel.

FIRST is passionate too, and they have found some rock-n-roll celebrities who are sparked for robotics and students, for technology!

"Science to me is music."

When the teams were in St Louis for Championships, The Black Eyed Peas, and Willow Smith gave FIRST robotics a very exclusive concert experience. That concert, supporting and cheering for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math turned the spotlight on the students, the future, and tonight, on ABC, you can see the concert, and hear from some pretty well known faces in showbiz. "Like" the facebook page, set the DVR, and watch: :: August 15, 6pm Central, 7pm Eastern and Pacific Standard Time. Today!

Post show, impressions:
My take: I can vouch for the students and the robotics. I think Delia made good points when she wrote this comment, "The student portions were nice. It would have been a good thing for them to print out the objectives / mission statement and way less "celebrity" showcasing. Perhaps Al Gore's network, Current, could produce a FIRST documentary for the sake of the fantastic content and leave out the celebrity hype. At least Dean K. received appropriate accolades. Sad to think that only hype will "sell", however, it was a good first step in letting a diverse audience in on FIRST."


Jennifer said...

Love this. All of it.

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Thank you Jennifer!
Please share the link... spread the word. Maybe on FB? I am anxious for FIRST to find ever greater success... for all students.

judy in ky said...

I am watching it now! I turned it on when I read your post. I do celebrate science!

nikkipolani said...

Love that: Children are the future but they need us to act on their behalf today. Glad you are part of the effort to focus on the these dedicated students.

judy in ky said...

I agree, a good first step. It's cool that these celebrities are supporting this. I am not a big celebrity follower, but a lot of kids are, so it's good that they are bringing attention to it.

tea time and roses said...

Hello Natalie,

A good thing indeed! Wishing you and the family a lovely week.