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VVSD Robotics Academy becomes a reality thanks to a grant from Citgo

11/10/2016, 8 a.m.
Several dozen Valley View School District 365U students are learning to design, build and program robots this semester thanks to ...
Abby Leynes and Jahaira Villagrana at Martinez Middle School in Romeoville

Several dozen Valley View School District 365U students are learning to

design, build and program robots this semester thanks to an Education

Partner Grant from Citgo's Lemont refinery.

VVSD Robotics Academy, conducted by Aurora-based Chasewood Learning, is a

free hands-on experience structured to help students learn about and use

engineering concepts in fun, engaging and dynamic ways.

"One of our goals is to get students to realize the opportunities STEM

(Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) careers can bring to them," said

VVSD 6-12 Math Coordinator Adriene Potilechio said. "We have so many great

STEM activities now. Robotics Academy is one more avenue to get students

interested."

Utilizing LEGO bricks, motors, sensors and much more, students learn about

machines that move by building such things as race cars, cranes, and

fishing poles. It promotes creativity, critical thinking, problem solving,

and coping with success and failure.

Robotics Academy meets once a week after school at both Martinez and

Humphrey middle schools. Plans call for the Academy to move to Brooks,

Jane Addams and Lukancic during the second semester.

"We're grateful for the opportunity Citgo has provided for us," Potilechio

said. "Hopefully this is the start of a great STEM partnership."