Five second graders from Pocopson Elementary School in West Chester, Pa., recently won the “Amazing Movement Award” for their LEGO® model of a chocolate milk manufacturing process at a FIRST® LEGO® League Expo. Coached by Pioneer research scientist Mark Jung, the team was sponsored by a donation from the Pioneer Crop Genetics R&D group through First State Robotics.
Team members William Jung, Ben Garozzo, Micah Peterson, Ben Reardon and Colin McVety began research last fall on how to make chocolate milk. They toured Bailys Dairy of Pocopson Meadow Farm in West Chester, Pa., and applied their knowledge to build a model of the process of making chocolate milk that included everything from milking to choco-fying to bottling.
“It is so great to watch these kids who have a general interest in how things work take that interest and turn it into a true engineering model,” Mark said. “These kids probably didn’t even realize the biology and engineering disciplines that they were learning. That is the great value of the FIRST® LEGO® program – they were learning science and engineering, and they were having a blast doing it.”
FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) was founded in 1989 to inspire young people's interest and participation in science and technology. Based in Manchester, N.H., the not-for-profit public charity designs accessible, innovative programs that motivate young people to pursue educational and career opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math, while building self-confidence, knowledge and life skills.