Thanks to a local manufacturing company, Farmington High School is looking to the educational future of its students with the help of a humanoid robot called NAO.
SRG Global and Farmington High School have partnered together to purchase NAO, a humanoid robot that is designed to help students learn to write and evaluate code. The $8,000 donation the company made toward the purchase will help students from middle school to the high school see the importance of learning code as a secondary language.
“The plan is to utilize the robot to teach students how to code,” said Principal Dr. Nathan Hostetler. “There are two directions the robot can allows us to take. The robot’s movement can be translated into code so the students can see what it looks like, or they can write code to be translated into movement.”
According to Hostetler, the plan is use the robot as a teaching tool to show students at both the middle school and the high school how robots moves and how they are used in the work force.
“I got a chance to tour the SRG plant, and I was amazed at what I saw,” Hostetler said. “They use robotics quite a bit.”
It was during Hostetler’s tour of the SRG plant with Scott Berry, the assembly and paint manager, that the partnership between the automotive chroming company and the high school started taking hold.
“Scott (Berry) and I have been friends for several years,” Hostetler said. “We have had many conversations. They were looking for a way to donate some money, and I just so happened to be looking at this robot. Everything just worked out.”
According to Berry, after talking to Hostetler and seeing all of the things the high school has to offer its students, he was very impressed in how the school is preparing its students for life after high school.
“It would be nice to join with Farmington High School so students know they do not have to leave Farmington after graduation,” Berry said. “(Graduating students) can stay here and still have some type of lifestyle. They can go off to college and still come back here.”
Although Hostetler and the district have already have a plan for the NOA, they want to see the program grow into the elementary schools as well.
“We are trying to build a systemic continued program that runs from the elementary to the high school,” Hostetler said. “We want the program to provide exposure to STEM, but also to programs to other programs that could benefit from this as well.”
Since the donation was made, the school has ordered the latest version of NOA and is patiently waiting for it arrival.
Craig Vaughn is a reporter for the Farmington Press and can be reached at 573-518-3629 or at email@example.com