PITTSBURG, KS (July 31, 2014) – The inaugural Pitsco Education Teacher Advisory Group (TAG) Summit brought together the wisdom of 12 leading STEM educators from across the US and the engagement and educational challenge of Pitsco’s products.

The Summit was held July 23-25, 2014, on the Pitsco campus in Pittsburg, Kansas. Company officials, product developers, and curriculum specialists met with the K-12 teachers to discuss current and future STEM products such as the new TETRIX® PRIME Building System for robotics, 3-D printing curriculum, and myDAQ miniSystems.

“We wanted to give teachers a hands-on experience with a variety of our newer products and activities so we could get their valuable feedback and ideas for our Product Development and Product Innovation teams,” said TAG Coordinator Ashlee Ricks.

Hands-on learning has been a hallmark of Pitsco products throughout the company’s 43 years in business, and the educators took full advantage of the opportunity to build and experiment with robots, a 3-D printer, and various other Pitsco products such as air-powered cars, a roller coaster, solar vehicles, and a rolling trebuchet.

Todd Rathier, a high school teacher from Leominster, Massachusetts, said he was looking for ideas to share with his coworkers, and he ended up getting even more.
“What can we do to supplement what we’re already doing and create a STEM academy? I’m really looking for solutions along those lines,” Rathier said. “One thing I can say about Pitsco, over the other companies I’ve looked at, they have a lot of product and they support it.”

Jewel Ausberry, who operates an afterschool STEM business near Atlanta, Georgia, was particularly fascinated with the new PRIME Building System for robotics. “I think it’s more appealing to middle school and up, so that’s great. We have classes and offerings for kids ages 3 to 16. But getting older kids in there, middle school and up, is very difficult. PRIME will be more interesting to them. It’s more dynamic. You can put those pieces together in a variety of ways, and students can experiment and take it to the next level. When I saw it, I was pulled in.”

2014 TAG Summit attendees included: Jewel R. Ausberry, Johns Creek, GA; Teresa Barton, Princeton, WV; Carol Denham, Cherokee, KS; Kim Forbes, High Point, NC; Karn Gustafson, Albuquerque, NM; Trudi Lawless, Orange Park, FL; Eileen Malick, Mechanicsville, VA; Sandra Martinie, Cherokee, KS; Sandra Melendez, Killeen, TX; Rena Mincks, Pullman, WA; Holly Neill, Aloha, OR; and Todd Rathier, Leominster, MA.

Pitsco is accepting applications for its 2015 TAG Team. To become a member, begin by filling out the online application (http://tinyurl.com/mevmxuj) before November 3, 2014. All applications will be reviewed, and semifinalists will be contacted by email with instructions on how to participate in the final selection. The new TAG members will be announced in December 2014.

• Pitsco Education Teacher Advisory Group: http://www.pitsco.com/Content/?art=7174
• Apply for 2015 TAG Team: http://tinyurl.com/mevmxuj
• TAG Summit Facebook album: http://tinyurl.com/pa38hpz
• Click to Tweet: Pitsco Teacher Advisory Group gives input on variety of hands-on products at inaugural TAG Summit. http://www.pitsco.com/About/?art=7547

Pitsco Education is the leading provider of age-appropriate, student-centered K-12 STEM learning solutions. Our standards-based curriculum, products, equipment, and materials promote student success through positive and challenging learning experiences, and our hands-on solutions teach core concepts and career skills in science, technology, engineering, and math.

About the Author:

Abi Mandelbaum

Abi Mandelbaum is CEO of YouVisit.