Albemarle Students Demonstrate Telegraph Design - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Albemarle Students Demonstrate Telegraph Design

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Students at Albemarle County's Sutherland Middle School have engineered some impressive new products thanks to an innovative science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) program.

The students are learning about electromagnets through their designs in a program that’s already gaining statewide acclaim and now has a possibility of being debuted on a national scale. Thursday, they demonstrated their functional telegraph design for state Secretary of Education Anne Holton.

The eighth-grade students from Sutherland had Holton send a message to fifth-grade students across the street at Hollymead Elementary School in Morse code. The students designed the devices, printed out the parts on a 3D printer, and built it themselves.

Holton says the program is an example of where she hopes education in Virginia is headed.

"It's so exciting to see this amazing work going on here and seeing this kind of creativity and innovation. Teachers who are supporting young people, doing their own inquiry and their own hands-on learning and I just hope we can do everything we can to facilitate this kind of creativity and innovation all across the state,” Holton said.

Eighth-grade science teacher Robbie Munsey says students retain the information much better by applying what they've learned.

Through their work, the students have also gained attention from the Smithsonian museum in Washington, D.C. The Smithsonian has now applied to have the students present their working telegraph in front of the president.

The students will also debut their invention at the International Society for Technology in Education Conference in Atlanta next month.

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