Early Education Grant Provides STEAM Learning for Jewish Day Schools

The David Lear Sulman Fund provides over 50% off research-based KIBO robot kits

KinderLab Robotics today announced a partnership with the David Lear Sulman Computing, Science, and Engineering Fund, which is offering the Limudei Code-Esh Curriculum (LCE) for Jewish day schools and Jewish supplemental schools. LCE is an integrated curriculum for students in grades K-3 (adaptable for preK-Grade 5) that was created to engage them with Judaic studies as they begin their journey into coding and robotics. With this program, Jewish schools can implement the free LCE curriculum while receiving a 10% discount on KIBO Robot Kits from KinderLab, and an additional 50% off the remaining price of the KIBO robots with the generous grant from the David Lear Sulman Fund.

This initiative includes curriculum and two STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) educational technology platforms, KIBO and ScratchJr. Students use these tools as they explore themes in the Jewish holiday cycle while expressing their ideas and understanding through building, coding, and art activities.

With the KIBO Robot Kit, children build, program, and decorate robots with age-appropriate tangible manipulatives, using no screens or keyboards. The free ScratchJr app introduces coding skills to young children who program their own interactive stories and games on a PC or tablet.

The STEAM program integrates coding and computational thinking through six Jewish holidays—Sukkot, Chanukkah, Tu B’shevat, Purim, Pesach, and Yom Ha’atzmaut—and was created as a collaboration between Professor Marina Bers of Tufts University and Jewish educators from orthodox, conservative, and reform day schools and supplemental schools. Through a six-unit curriculum, young students use STEAM concepts and tools to tell stories and integrate Jewish themes and customs expressively.

Rose-Jane Sulman, director of the David Lear Sulman Fund, said, “Our goal is to improve Jewish schools by improving their STEAM education. We want our children to be the leaders of the future, and to do that they need to understand how to create with and use technology. Those who can create with technology will have the strongest voice in the future.”

Mitch Rosenberg, CEO of KinderLab Robotics, added, “Partnering with the Sulman Fund was an easy choice because their mission complements ours: to provide age-appropriate STEAM experiences to our youngest learners and empower them to express themselves and their culture. We are excited to see young students use KIBO, decorated with arts and crafts, to bring Jewish holidays to life through storytelling. Coding truly is the new literacy of the 21st century.”

Current research shows the importance of introducing STEAM learning in early elementary grades to develop computational thinking, confidence, collaboration, and individual expression. Research shows that even the youngest students can learn sequencing and coding in any subject if it is presented in a fun and engaging way. Positive learning outcomes for young learners who work with robotics include improved sequencing ability, mastery of foundational coding, and improved computational thinking with concrete tools.

More information on the Limudei Code-Esh Program is available here.

The American Consortium for Equity in Education, publisher of the "Equity & Access" journal, celebrates and connects the educators, associations, community partners and industry leaders who are working to solve problems and create a more equitable environment for historically underserved pre K-12 students throughout the United States.

Current issue of Equity & Access:

Equity & Access - Issue 28

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