7th and 8th grade students participate in the STREAM program as part of their science curriculum. The Synergistic Lab at St. Thomas has 13 different workstations including Alternative Energy, Flight, Robots, Audio Broadcasting, Computer Graphics and Animation, and Bio-Technology. Each workstation takes about seven classes to complete. Working with a partner, students get hands on experience doing experiments and projects associated with the workstation topic.
For example, in Engineering Bridges, students design and build a bridge which is then placed in a testing rig to determine how strong their bridge is. In Flight, students make a wing which is tested with a wind machine to see how much “lift” it generates; in Robots, they program a robot to perform a repetitive task. One of the real strengths of the STREAM/Synergistic program is that it exposes students to a wide variety of possible career choices before they get into high school and need to choose a course of study for their college years.