BERKELEY COUNTY, S.C. (WCIV) — Teaching young children about the real life applications of the science behind fun items like Legos and 3D printers is part of the reason Philip Simmons Elementary School’s Dr. Melissa Negreiros has been nominated for the first Lowcountry STEM Educator of the Month.
Science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) can be scary subjects for some students, but Negreiros is using them to foster creativity among her students.
Negreiros says when her students aren’t in the classroom learning and growing, they can be found giving back by cleaning up school grounds.
Even that, Negreiros says, is used to help the students grow intellectually and creatively, by turning trash into works of art.
“The art outside of the library is made up of plastic trash that was collected from our community and repurposed to bring awareness to repurpose the plastic and the trash that they collected,” Negreiros said.
Philip Simmons has even adopted a motto: “Make it Better.” Students and staff have even have a hashtag they’re using for their good deeds: #makeitbetter.
“Anything we do, we try as educators and as a school and as a community, we try to make it better,” Negreiros says.
It's not only in the classroom or in the schoolyard, one youngster put a STEM lesson on food deserts into action, Negreiros says.
“One of our students actually went home over a weekend and repurposed an old newspaper box, and built her own blessing box and had it registered with the actual blessing box people.
The Philip Simmons kids are doing extraordinary things to make the community better. Thanks to Dr. Negreiros for her efforts in helping to make that happen.
ABOUT LOWCOUNTRY STEM EDUCATOR OF THE MONTH
ABC News 4 is teaming with the Lowcountry STEM Collaborative and business partner Panera to recognize STEM educators from the greater Charleston area making important contributions in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math. To nominate any educator who deserves recognition for their efforts in the STEM fields, or to learn more about the initiative, CLICK HERE.