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STEAM Academy: Robots That Make a Difference

4:30 PM - 6:30 PM Monday, March 27, 2023

Main Library
449 Broadway

Event image for STEAM Academy: Robots That Make a Difference

Our STEAM Academy partnership with Innovators for Purpose brings iFp Labs: Robots That Make a Difference to local teens. iFp Labs spark the curiosity of students in grades 7-8 who may have not developed an inclination for science or math. Starting with students’ interest in building a better world, we introduce the underlying science and math principles to bring their solutions to life. This non-intimidating entry point broadens participation beyond those with a natural inclination for science and math programs.


Using a humanities-first approach students are introduced to robotics. Over 13 weeks in an after-school setting, students use the design process to understand the daily challenges of people with disabilities. Students then define a relevant problem that they would like to take on, explore potential solutions and ultimately build and program robotic prototypes demonstrating their solutions. Problem-solving is coupled with lessons and exercises to teach fundamental and advanced programming concepts and illustrate methods for applying robot kit sensors, actuators, and mechanical components.  

Innovators for Purpose (iFp) is a Cambridge-based nonprofit that inspires high-potential, diverse young people to discover their passions, develop innovative mindsets and cultivate marketable skills to solve problems they care most about. Summer Studio teens are funded in part through the Mayor's Summer Youth Employment Program. The Cambridge Public Library STEAM Academy is part of Cambridge STEAM Initiative's efforts to enhance and expand students’ access to quality STEAM learning experiences. Made possible by generous support from the Eric and Jane Nord Family Fund and Verizon.