Support the Students
After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:
- Pinpoint the most effective ways to support students participating in the Future Trailblazer Challenge program.
- Identify potential obstacles to the program.
- List ways to support educators and volunteers helping participating in the program.
There are plenty of ways that you and your volunteer team can support the students participating in your Future Trailblazer Challenge. For one, set one day per week for you and your team to visit the classrooms—this is VITAL! We suggest that you and the volunteers spend at least 1-2 hours per week at the school. Of course, any additional time would be even more beneficial.
Before starting the program, ask your volunteers to read the previous unit on running the Future Trailblazer Challenge, specifically the role descriptions and timeline. Also, point them to the downloadable Future Trailblazer Challenge curriculum and Student Handbook. These materials will help your volunteers understand what the students will be learning within the suggested timeline.
Throughout the thirty-hour curriculum, there will be various opportunities for students to work together in their teams. You and the volunteers can float around the classroom and help the students brainstorm and think through their ideas, or just help to answer their questions if they look stuck.
Since this will most likely be the very first time your educators and volunteers have participated in a program like this, we recommend that you host both an Educator training and Volunteer training prior to the beginning of the thirty-hour curriculum. Trainings are a great way to get to know your educators and volunteers (if you don’t already) and answer questions they have about the program.
Here are some tips on how you can actively support your trusty partners:
It might be overly optimistic to say that your program will run snag-free. A few challenges might pop up along the way, but with the support of your volunteers and educators, we are confident that you will be able to overcome any bumps in the road.
Here are some possible challenges and solutions.
|Students aren’t engaged or motivated
|Educators feel overwhelmed with the content to be delivered in 30 hours
|Volunteers aren’t participating regularly
|Students’ projects aren’t ready in time for the Maker Faire