bESTology is about studying and understanding the possible “problem(s)” presented through the theme and its industry connection. No specific problem is identified, but students are able to learn all about the industry that the theme is targeting for the year. This helps them with their research paper and understanding of the theme/problem when it is unveiled at Kickoff and how it relates to the real-world activities. bESTology prepares students skills in:
Students learn how to research topics. They learn how to gather relevant information from a number of resources, how to summarize factual data, how to separate opinion from fact, and how to credit references appropriately.
Through the writing activities, students learn how to write about a topic. They have opportunity to practice their grammar, spelling and other composition skills. They may perform formal writing, notes for a discussion or presentation, various forms of creative writing, and journaling. They learn how to present their ideas individually or within a group and when/how to avoid plagiarism.
Activities may include unique type of puzzles or other problem-solving acitivities that may occur individually or as a group. This includes thinking about solutions to the problems presented by the industry theme. Students are asked to take what they have learned and think about connections to BEST Robotics and to their own community.
Activities allow for students to tap into their own creativity. Students may be asked to develop graphics, posters, banners, models, or a number of other items that are open to their creativity.
Timeframe and Duration
bESTology occurs in the spring and may last anywhere from 9 weeks to 12 weeks. Activities are released each week, typically on Sunday evening. Students (and teachers) may work on the activities throughout the entire week at their own pace. All weekly activities are archived so that students (or teams) can begin/end/restart at their leisure.
A weekly bESTology activity typically follows an outline similar to this:
- BEST Connection
- Community Connection
See and participate in all the bESTology lessons at https://bestology.bestrobotics.org