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Full STEAM ahead for Lakota students

Lakota is moving full STEAM ahead to prepare its students for the future.

A growing number of school districts nationwide are discovering that students not only need STEM..science, technology, engineering and math, but an added element...art. Lakota has also added medical, forming the STEAM squared acronym. At Liberty Junior School teacher Doug Noxsel instructed seventh graders in his design class to build the tallest structure they could with certain specifications.  

"We're up to 108 inches so we hold the record right here right now. Now I want to talk to you about this for holding the record today, 108 inches because the day's not over."

The U.S. Labor Department says one half of the fastest growing occupations are STEAM squared related fields. Lakota elementary school students will design windmills, alarms and model membranes. Seventh grader Jake Apking didn't know what to expect when he came to this design class a few weeks ago. 

"Well, I looked around the room and I thought it would be mostly with computers but I guess it's more with building and a kind of collaboration."

Butler Tech provides the instructors and curriculum. Eventually the seventh graders will model in computerized  3-D.

"These kids are ready for it. These kids want this. These kids want to have a multidisciplinary classroom where they can pull together the great stuff from their science teacher, their math teacher and pull together in a way to be innovative."

The program is on a five year rollout. When these seventh graders get to high school they can choose one of two paths; pre-engineering or bio-medical. 

Hear a longer version of this story here.




With more than 30 years of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market, Ann Thompson brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting. She has reported for WKRC, WCKY, WHIO-TV, Metro Networks and CBS/ABC Radio. Her work has been recognized by the Associated Press and the Society of Professional Journalists. In 2019 and 2011 A-P named her “Best Reporter” for large market radio in Ohio. She has won awards from the Association of Women in Communications and the Alliance for Women in Media. Ann reports regularly on science and technology in Focus on Technology.