Mamaroneck Schools' STEM-tastic Exceeds Expectations

LARCHMONT – The first STEM-tastic Saturday, a community celebration of science, technology, engineering and math was held this past weekend at the Hommocks Middle School. Educators, professionals and students of varying age groups came together to demonstrate applications in these fields.

Jamie Kauffman, 6, is a first grader who exhibited at STEM-tastic Saturday.
Jamie Kauffman, 6, is a first grader who exhibited at STEM-tastic Saturday. Photo Credit: Contributed

Although organizers from the STEM Alliance of Mamaroneck-Larchmont intended to attract at least 700 people to the event, more than 2,000 tickets were sold, according to a press release.

Jamie Kauffman, 6, the youngest exhibitor at the event, explained how circuits work on the R/C snap circuit rover he built. Around him, people launched rockets, looked through microscopes, made root beer and engaged in other activities.

Geodesic-dome building demonstrations were led by the Girl Scouts of the Hudson, while Mamaroneck art teachers taught spectators how to make furniture out of recycled water bottles.

Hommocks Middle School Principal Seth Weitzman expressed excitement over the event’s presentations.

“You could build and race cars, view art, touch starfish taken from the sound, and try the latest technology— and that just scratches the surface of what was offered,” Weitzman said in a press release.

Professionals in the STEM fields also led workshops and roundtable discussions about career opportunities in these disciplines.

“The 7th grade girls who attended our ‘Women in Medicine’ roundtable came equipped with thoughtful questions,” said Gali Lodish in a press release. “I’m definitely coming back next year.”

The idea for STEM-tastic Saturday grew out of a STEM Alliance community meeting during the spring of 2013.

“We all depend on STEM products and functions in our everyday lives and our youth can design the future now,” said STEM Alliance leader Meg Kaufer in a press release.

The event was funded by a Mamaroneck Schools Foundation grant.

Attendees included Mamaroneck Village Mayor Norm Rosenblum, Larchmont Mayor Anne McAndrews and Mamaroneck Town Supervisor Nancy Seligson and Mamaroneck School District Superintendent Robert Shaps.

Organizers intend to hold the event again next year.

The STEM-Alliance of Larchmont-Mamaroneck is a non-profit organization committed to advancing STEM education for the benefit of students in grades K-12 and educators in the Mamaroneck School District and the Larchmont-Mamaroneck community, according to a press release.

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