On March 21, students, teachers, administrators and families participated in STEAMakers Night at Rogers Forge Elementary School. The event was planned and coordinated by Hot Spots Extended Care Program Educators in conjunction with the teachers at RFES, with the goal of building community awareness about the school’s new makerspace and maker-related activities.

STEAMakers Night

HSECP Educators and RFES teachers worked together in the weeks leading up to the event to structure fun, engaging and informative activities to be conducted during STEAMakers Night. HSECP educators and RFES teachers then attended training sessions to ensure that everyone had a clear understanding of what the activities would look like so that they could best support the culminating event. The knowledge of the tools that were used, gained through these training sessions, was helpful in explaining to parents how such spaces and tools can be used to support future classroom learning.

Hot Spots Extended Care Program Partnership with Rogers Forge Elementary School

One of the goals of the STEAMakers event was to show parents how students interact and build within makerspaces, and how participating in such activities fosters creativity and problem solving—skills that are applicable in various other areas of their lives. The partnership between Hot Spots and Rogers Forge Elementary provided the support needed to power such a large and involved event. Through this partnership, Rogers Forge teachers and staff were able to provide a variety of resources to students that they have otherwise would not have had funds to purchase. These resources enhance learning experiences for students by allowing them to explore outside of the classroom and encourage children to share their learning at home.

The key to making this event successful was clear communication and collaboration between Rodgers Forge staff and HotSpots educators. Rogers Forge liaison, Jennifer Piet, stated of the event:

We chose to partner with HSECP to extend this event because they have knowledge of the tools we were using and a deep understanding of the maker movement. Their teachers were knowledgeable and hands-on with the activities which allowed us to inform more parents of the importance of what we are doing. The eagerness of the HSECP staff was so beneficial to our event. They jumped right in to help with the activities and kept the students and parents on task. Since it was such a large event, without their support we would not have had enough staff members. Emily was so responsive in supporting the needs of our event which also made it such a huge success.

Beyond the event, the partnership between Hot Spots and Rogers Forge will continue to foster opportunities for teachers and students including new lesson plans and curriculum-based maker activities. Using the resources provided by Hot Spots, Rogers Forge will be able to engage all learners in ways that teachers and staff were previously unable to do through traditional learning.

HSECP Programs and Partnerships

Hot Spots Extended Care Programs offer elementary schools around Maryland the opportunity to further their educational and enrichment goals through our before and after-school care programs and partnerships. Our purpose is aid students in the application of skills learned during the traditional educational day and to transfer and reinforce that knowledge using instructional strategies, hands-on learning experiences and digital learning tools. HSECP also provides schools with access to partners, within the communities in which they reside, in effort to form two-way relationships that are rooted in goal alignment, effective communication and constructive group reflection.

Hot Spots applies state and county quality data to enhance program services and assess enrichment opportunities. Why? Simply stated — because we want to help students achieve. If you are interested in learning about the opportunities that HSECP can provide for your school, contact us today!