The Westside School Fund provides transformative experiences

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Annual giving allows Westside School to invest in transformative student experiences like our robotics program and salmon release in the spring

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Robotics

Since 2012, Westside School has been igniting minds through robotics programming and design. Each year students in grades fifth through eighth have the opportunity to develop their STEM skills by learning block programming, robot design, and applying robotic properties to real life situations.

In 2015, the seventh grade robotics team made Westside School history by making it to the semi-finals at the Annual First Lego League robotics competition. After competing against 35 teams and making it to the top five, they headed to compete against the best of the best at the semi-finals.

The challenge: Trash Trek. The assignment: to improve the way people handle the trash they make. From start to finish Westside School students worked together to produce a project based on ocean clean-up and trash incineration. Through Westside’s Robotic program, these students continue to develop critical thinking, collaboration and problem solving, along with 21st century skills such as creativity, imagination, curiosity, and innovation.

A curriculum that includes robotics provides students with the ability to take an active role in their own learning and forms a necessary foundation for likes in the ever-changing world. Your contribution to the Annual Fund allows Westside School to remain innovative and provide transformative student experiences like the Robotics enrichment program.

Salmon Release

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Each spring, students release hundreds of Coho salmon parr into Fauntleroy Creek. Picture a beautiful spring morning with sunshine and blue skies overhead, the park filled with newly leafed out salmon berry bushes, ferns and skunk cabbage. Birds are chirping, a wren’s nest quivering and the students are so excited to see the fish find their place in a wild habitat. Out of the tank and into the creek!

Students monitor the growth of salmon through the stages of egg, alevin, fry and parr. The monitoring includes feeding them crushed fish flakes and blood worms, observing and recording their behaviors weekly, cleaning the tank daily and inspecting the equipment. The salmon study includes guest speakers, field trips, a dissection, science observation journals, acrostic poetry writing and fictional writing based.

The salmon release program is one example of the transformative experiences Westside School can offer students because of the Westside School Fund.

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