Yellow Pages |   News Updates |   Local Jobs |   Events Calendar |   Movie Times | Recycling
Rocklin and Roseville Today Local Events
contact add event advertise 

Colfax Students Develop Electric Amplifier that Works with MP3 players



STEM-Speaker.jpg

Rocklin, CA- Modeling the innovation and design process, Colfax High School teachers, with support from the Sierra College Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Collaborative, developed curriculum for making an electric amplifier that works with MP3 players.

The project has proven to be a full-scale success with freshmen. Students will demonstrate the results at an Amp-Up Expo on Wednesday, June 5 at 10:15 a.m. at Colfax High School.

The Colfax instructors sought a way for students to complete units in design, electronics, metal, wood and media that culminated in an appealing, memorable and useful project. The goal was to instill 21st Century Skills, promote Career Technical Education (CTE), and introduce STEM careers. Sierra College faculty provided advice and the Sierra STEM Collaborative supplied a vacuum former, plasma cutter and other new technology, as well as supported teachers' externships and professional development.

According to Christian Kinsey, Tech Essentials,  teacher, Colfax students used to make race cars when the introductory technology class was an elective. Once Tech Essentials became required for all freshmen, instructors invented a more universally appealing hands-on project. The new curriculum introduced students to tools in the tech labs, reinforced applied academics and taught problem solving. In addition, the project allowed student customization, encouraged career exploration and appealed to male and female students. 

"Although it was hard to let go of the car project and develop new curriculum, it was a fun process for the four teachers working together," said Kinsey. "We brainstormed to find a project that would inspire students, could be built in the semester, was cost-effective and included elements from all the CTE courses. Most importantly, we wanted to encourage innovation and teach critical thinking skills." 

Students learn software and online tools to manage their projects, develop design skills, and produce documentation such as a parts list and bill of materials. They learn to use 3D drafting to design the sound tube, make a wood mold for vacuum forming the speaker caps out of plastic, solder circuit boards for the sound tubes and fabricate stands out of metal.

With a team, the students design a logo, use the computer numerical control (CNC) machine tool to cut vinyl images for branding, research related STEM education and career paths, develop presentations and demonstrate their electric amplifiers at an "Amp Up Expo." Community representatives give feedback on the final projects at the Expo. Students save the project documentation and support materials in online portfolios that can be shown to prospective employers.

"Every generation has a desire to listen to music," said Kinsey. "Sierra College STEM provided the support to take that idea and develop a fully integrated design technology course that starts high school students off with a powerful experience in design, fabrication and product development." 

The Colfax teachers have linked real world product development with rigorous academics to excite students about the opportunities in design, engineering and manufacturing, explained Carol Pepper-Kittredge, Director, Center for Applied Competitive Technologies (CACT), Sierra College.

"The goal of the Sierra College STEM Collaborative is to support teacher innovation," said Pepper-Kittredge. "At Colfax High School, the teachers have instilled creativity into an academically challenging project that builds technical skills, and teaches communication and teamwork required by employers."

After Pepper-Kittredge reviewed the students' projects, she said, "Students were so proud of what they had created. These students are our nations' future entrepreneurs and innovators." 

About Sierra College STEM Collaborative

The Sierra STEM Collaborative is funded by California Community College Chancellor's Office, to create a pipeline of students interested in technical careers. Students can pursue Welding, Mechatronics, Engineering, Energy Technology and Drafting & Engineering Support at Sierra College. For information, go to www.sierraschoolworks.com or contact Carol Pepper-Kittredge, Sierra College at (916) 660-7801.





Placer County News Headlines

Roseville Sorority Chapter Supports Former Foster Youth at Sierra CollegeSusan Goto and Carol Sue Acres, representing the Alpha Delta Kappa Beta ETA Chapter in Roseville, stopped by the Sierra College Foundation Office

Tahoe City Bridge Nears ApprovalTahoe Regional Planning Agency Board vote remains for final approval of new bridge in Tahoe City

PAC Track and Field Championships in Rocklin at Whitney HighRocklin, CA - The Pacific Association Youth Championships (PAC) for track and field will take place at Whitney High School in Rocklin on May 30-31.

Roseville Gas Prices Tick Down: Find the Best DealsRoseville gas prices are down slightly this week and are expected to have peaked for 2015. That's good news for summer travelers and commuters.

Adult Literacy in Placer CountyA local business owner in her mid-30's recently contacted the Placer Adult Literacy Service (PALS) requesting tutoring.

Lexus LS 460: Performance & LuxuryWhen you get behind the wheel of the LS 460, there's no second guessing that this is indeed a luxury sedan.

Roseville Crime Report Digest Update (5.26.15)The Roseville Police Department's weekly crime report digest update, May 26, 2015.

Attempted Murder Arrest in RocklinJoseph Thomas Spera, 22, from Auburn was arrested by Rocklin Police for attempted murder of victim by stabbing.

Pediatric Telemedicine Consults Deliver Cost SavingsResearchers at UC Davis have conducted a comprehensive study to determine whether pediatric telemedicine consultations with rural emergency departments

50 Days of the Grateful Dead: Sugar MagnoliaIn a nod to the recent Dear Jerry Celebration held at the Merriweather Post Pavilion and an online request, we step back in time 32 years to June 1983.

Memorial Day Weekend : All Aboard as Railroad Season BeginsWhen the whistle blows Memorial Day weekend it will be full steam ahead this summer aboard the historic Virginia & Truckee Railroad

American River Project: Water Transfer ApprovedDrought Watch: At the May 21 meeting of the Placer County Water Agency (PCWA) Board of Directors, the Board approved a resolution authorizing the release of 12,000 acre-feet


NEWS: In Case You Missed It