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The Promise Academy at ML King HS

Oct.-Jan. | 2012-2013


Upcoming Dates

The STE2AM Academy Newsletter

Science, Technology,

Oct. 19rd

BEST Robotics competition in Grove City, PA

Dec. 3rd

(week of) First Tech Challenge Meet Week Event #1 and 2 @ 440 N. Broad Street

Jan. 28th

(week of) First Tech Challenge Meet Week Event #3 and 4 @ 440 N. Broad Street

Engineering\Entrepreneurship, Arts & Mathematics

We must continue to tap into the “new age of innovation� in our young people. By investing in STEM or STEM-like hybrid programs, we do just that. Our STE2AM program has been well received in our greater school community. Our population will continue to be instantly gratified. This instant success will propel our students to greater academic heights. -William C. Wade, Principal

ATTRACTING OUTSTANDING STUDENTS, GAINING MOMENTUM The Promise Academy at Martin Luther King High School is well into the first year of our STE2AM Academy. This first cohort of ninth-grade students is beginning to explore project-based learning techniques that promote critical thinking, problem solving and an overall collaborative theme. Please explore the new offerings presented in our STE2AM newsletter, and join us in welcoming our students to an exciting new educational opportunity. more on


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Issue | Date from greenhouses, ideas for gas monitoring systems using open-source Arduino® programs, and community outreach ideas such as produce sales and cooking classes in the vein of produce-derived methane.

ML King Natural Gas Vehicle Project The Entrepreneurship class and students from the Auto Academy have combined to tackle an important global problem. Our mission is to build a natural gas car to help save money, to help the environment, to drive technological innovation, to inspire others and to create a breadth of new job opportunities. Business plan development and funding opportunities will soon be pursued with the likes of DuPont and T. Boone Pickens. COLLABORATION After first meeting at the Driving SCIENCE™ PD at Dover International Speedway (Sept. 26-28) Mr. Jones and Dr. Baxter have been working closely with Antoine Edmonds (from Talley Middle School in Delaware’s Brandywine SD). Mr. Edmonds has expressed similar enthusiasm for the project, proposing various methods of collecting methane

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PROTOTYPING In our preliminary testing, we successfully retrofitted a lawnmower to run on propane, and are currently in the developmental stages of creating a gas-propane hybrid. With the help of Dr. Howe, our high school’s Chemistry teacher, students will gain a deeper understanding about concepts of bond energy and energy efficiency in gasoline, propane, methane, etc. To view the lawnmower demo or to find out more information, please visit our website:


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DISCOVERY EDUCATION The Promise Academy at Martin Luther King High School is proud to be a provider of this STEM educational platform in the School District of Philadelphia in 2012-2013. STREAMING PLUS Discovery Education Streaming Plus features a collection of more than 160,000 of the newest learning multimedia assets, all designed for easy

integration into a curriculum and correlated to state standards. Streaming content includes a comprehensive video library featuring exclusive titles from Discovery Channel including LIFE, PLANET EARTH, and MYTHBUSTERS. Benefitting equally is the teaching staff, who can now easily identify relevant content for lessons utilizing enhanced search tools, such as Curriculum Standards Search.

SCIENCE TECHBOOK Built from the ground up to address state and Core Standards, Discovery Education







resource and






schools. interactive

resources support the 5E Model of instruction and capture digitally students’ attention.


For more info, visit: Dolor Sit Amet


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BEST (Boosting Engineering Science Technology) BEST is a middle and high school robotics competition whose mission is to engage and excite students about engineering, science, and technology as well as inspire them to pursue careers in these fields. Students from The Promise Academy at Martin Luther King HS and Overbrook HS were the sole representatives from Philadelphia this year, and each team earned the respect of regional competitors and judges, alike. By the end of the final round, the ML King HS “Robokings” successfully climbed the 10-foot ‘space elevator’, and placed in the 8th overall spot out of a 15-team field. Photos: Top Right - The playing field, which consisted of four balls, a space station and a team flag (not shown); Middle Right - A simulated space station, created using Google Sketchup (see pg. 5), showing the robot at the beginning of its climb; Middle Right 2 – A side view of the robot showing a single drive-wheel responsible for the climbing action and the claw used for collecting samples; Bottom Left – A team member makes adjustments to the robot between competition rounds; Bottom Right – Team members explaining the ML King HS Tri-fold showing different simulated perspectives of the robot climbing the space elevator.

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ARCHITECTURAL AND ENGINEERING DRAFTING AND DESIGN Starting in the second quarter, The Promise Academy at Martin Luther King High School is offering a new enrichment to senior-level students called "Architectural and Engineering Drafting and Design." Students will learn to create models of parts, buildings, and landscapes in SketchUp and Solidworks. In addition, students will have the opportunity to pair up with engineering design teams from the Departments of Biomedical, Electrical, Chemical, and Mechanical Engineering at Drexel University. Through this unique collaboration, students will be exposed to the fundamentals of the Engineering Design Process as they assist with the drafts of each project. At the end of the school year, M.L. King students will attend the final engineering presentations in front of corporate judges, department faculty and university employees.

CURRENT EVENTS New Discoveries With Language Learning Robots ScienceDaily (June 13, 2012) — Robots can develop basic language skills through interaction with a human, according to new results from researchers at the University of Hertfordshire and published in PLoS ONE. Dr Caroline Lyon, Professor Chrystopher Nehaniv and Dr Joe Saunders have carried out experiments as part of the iTalk project with the childlike iCub humanoid robot to show how language learning emerges. Dolor Sit Amet


STUDENT REFLECTIONS: How would you teach this robot a phrase such as: “turn on a dime” or “chip on your shoulder”?

Initially the robot can only babble and perceives speech as a string of sounds, not divided up into words. After engaging in a few minutes of "conversation" with humans, in which the participants were instructed to speak to the robot as if it were a small child, the robot adapted its output to the most frequently heard syllables to produce some word forms such as the names of simple shapes and colours. Dr Caroline Lyon said: "It is known that infants are sensitive to the frequency of sounds in speech, and these experiments show how this sensitivity can be modelled and contribute to the learning of word forms by a robot." The iTalk project teaches the robot to speak using methods similar to those used to teach children and is a key part in the learning process of the human-robot interaction. Although the iCub robot is learning to produce word forms, it does not know their meaning, and learning meanings is another part of the iTalk project's research. These scientific and technological advances could have a significant impact on the future generation of interactive robotic systems.

Jamir: “First, I would introduce the objective to the robot in the simplest way possible. Then I would ask questions while interacting with the robot to make sure he\she understands what is happening. Finally, ask the robots questions to see if he\she fully understood what had taken place.” Deshaun: “A dime is money and it has 2 sides front and back. I want you to turn the dime on the other side. Next, this is a chip and this is my shoulder. If I put the chip on my shoulder, where is the chip? This means I am angry.” Naomie: “I would say that turning on a dime means to turn really fast, one second you are facing left, then you are facing right. A chip on your shoulder means that you have an attitude…not feeling it right now.” Gianni: “I would read it the phrases and show it what they say. Then I would give the robot an example of the meaning so they can know what it means.” Yashura: “The phrases mean something that is out of context. I would say that phrase means someone has an attitude.”

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