Sweden National Museum of Science and Technology “Maker Tour” Inspires NJ Students

Touring makerspace unit challenges Fair Lawn, NJ middle school students to imagine, innovate and create

On March 4, 5 and 6, 2019, The Swedish National Museum of Science and Technology brought a makerspace on wheels group to middle school students at Thomas Jefferson and Memorial Middle Schools in Fair Lawn, NJ to raise interest in technology while promoting the value of science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics (STEAM) education and its application in the real world.

Partners with the National Museum, Sandvik, Inc. and Sandvik Coromant, both based in Fair Lawn, NJ, sponsored the hands-on workshops which gave students the opportunity to experiment with programming, robots and electronics. Intended to spark the creative process, students created prototypes using Strawbees and Quirkbots, which are Swedish inventions used in education around the world, that introduce simple programming and mechatronics into the prototype designs which encouraged students to try out new ideas.

“We are proud of our continuing partnerships with Sandvik, Inc., which has supported our schools locally through our STEM league competitions and our High School technology laboratory. This newest partnership will provide all of our seventh-graders with an opportunity to see how coding, technology, robotics and design-thinking can be used to solve problems in the local and global communities,” said Ron Durso, District Supervisor of Science & Engineering for the Fair Lawn Public Schools.

According to JoAnn Mitchell, Sr. Partner Marketing Specialist at Sandvik Coromant, “The objective of the Maker Tour is to strengthen the confidence and lower the threshold for the students to get started with innovation and problem solving. We have seen that the creative process can be a powerful way to learn with a high intrinsic motivation from the students. Using our hands is key to developing our nervous system and problem-solving skills. What we learn from tinkering, putting things together, taking them apart – investigating real life 3D structures – is helpful to us in almost all aspects of life.”

“We have found a great way to inspire both teachers and students all around Sweden, and we are convinced that it will work equally well internationally. Teachers often have a positive view of digital development but lack the tools to work with this subject in the classroom. The traditional classroom-based method of teaching needs to be complemented with creative, hands-on activities,” says Maria Olsson, who is responsible for the project at the National Museum of Science and Technology in Stockholm.

Jessica Alm, Head of Sandvik Group Communications, states, “The ability to find the right skills is crucial to the success of our company. We are working in many different ways to inspire an early interest among young people in mathematics, the natural sciences and technology.” She continues, “We are a global company, and the Maker Tour gives us the opportunity to demonstrate Sandvik’s values and wide-ranging areas of expertise. The Maker Tour has been a great success in Swedish schools, and it’ll be great fun to introduce the concept to American students.”

About Sandvik Group

Sandvik is a high-tech and global engineering group offering products and services that enhance customer productivity, profitability and safety. We hold world-leading positions in selected areas – tools and tooling systems for metal cutting; equipment and tools, service and technical solutions for the mining and construction industries; products in advanced stainless steels and special alloys as well as products for industrial heating. In 2018, the Group had approximately 42,000 employees and revenues of about 100 billion in more than 150 countries within continuing operations.

For more information, visit www.sandvik.com.

Sandvik Coromant

Part of global industrial engineering group Sandvik, Sandvik Coromant is at the forefront of manufacturing tools, machining solutions and knowledge that drive industry standards and innovations demanded by the metalworking industry now and into the next industrial era. Educational support, extensive R&D investment and strong customer partnerships ensure the development of machining technologies that change, lead and drive the future of manufacturing. Sandvik Coromant owns over 3100 patents worldwide, employs over 7,900 staff, and is represented in 150 countries.

For more information visit www.sandvik.coromant.com or connect on social media Facebook | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn | Instagram.