The all-girl team from South Park High School poses for a photo with their Thimble kits.

In the high school division, the all-girl team from South Park High School was awarded second place. Source: Mission: IGNITE Powered by Computers For Children, Facebook Page

Here at Thimble, it’s extremely important to us to be active in our community! We love working hands-on with teachers and students who are inspired to dive deeper into STEM.

In fact, giving back is one of our passions!

You may have seen us at a few events around the area at the Niagara STEM Exposition, the Niagara Air Show, and more. We are always so delighted to be able to say hello and see such a buzz around electronics.

That’s why we jumped at the chance to sponsor and participate in the WNY Brain Challenge, organized by Mission: IGNITE Powered by Computers For Children. Not only were we able to sponsor the event, but we were able to donate Thimble Kits to some of the awarded winners of the Challenge!

The WNY Brain Challenge is a competition for middle and high school students to use their creativity, ingenuity and problem-solving skills to turn on a light using a series of simple machines, the catch? They can’t use their hands.

Students were asked to use a random collection of everyday objects to create a contraption that had eight different steps triggered by rolling a ball down a ramp. Simple machines, powered by gravity challenged students to consider the power of inclined planes, levers, force, and motion. This is done in the spirit of Rube Goldberg, an innovator, and cartoonist.

Of course, what the students came up with were a variety of creative approaches to solving the problem. It was a close call, and judges made sure to check for students compliance with the contest rules, the efficacy of the different steps, how well the students worked together, and how creative their ideas were.

Second place winners in the high school and middle school divisions took home a Thimble Creator Set, the first project subscribers receive when they sign up for Thimble! The kit comes with 12 projects in 1, including projects like a nightlight, doorbell, LCD Disco Ball, a Music Composer, and more.

Those winners were teams from South Park High School and Clarence Middle School. Congratulations teams! We can’t wait to see what awesome projects they will be able to create with these Creator Sets.

The members of our team who were able to attend the event and witness this impressive show of creativity and ingenuity are confident that the Creator Sets will be a natural next step for these impressive students.

The event was held May 24 at Erie Community College South Campus, simultaneous with the annual Erie Community College Tech- Wars competition. Organized by the Western New York Technology Educators Association, this event works to inspire creativity in both middle school, and high school students.

This year’s Tech Wars was the most well-attended event of the past 10 years! 500 students from 27 school districts collaborated with fellow students in on-the-spot problem solving, designing robots, marshmallow-throwing catapults, paper airplanes and elaborate devices.

The team from Clarence Middle School poses for a photo with their Thimble kits.

In the middle school division, the team from Clarence Middle School was awarded second place. Source: Mission: IGNITE Powered by Computers For Children, Facebook Page

We had a fantastic day watching the future of STEM and are so thrilled to see these students take time to really build and use their creativity.

We can’t wait for the next Thimble in the community event where we can meet more members in our neighborhood! Next time you see us, stop by and say hello!