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Plum Borough School District News Article

Design to Make a Difference - 2018 -19

PHS High School Team 

Design to Make a Difference is a design/engineering program that combines Maker-Education with altruism in a product-based learning format. 

D2MD challenged middle and high school teams from the Greater Pittsburgh Area schools to create a product that helps an individual, group, or local/global community.  Both "Health and Wellness" and/or "Sustainability" were the themes for this year's program.   

Jonah Albert, Natalee Calfo-Carroll, Kacie Persia, and Elsa Van Beek created a product called Tags for Talking.  Using a 3D printer they created a interactive bracelet  tag that helps to break the stigma around mental health and build a supportive community.  These amazing students also created a website that links to the bracelet that helps students find resources for support and professional help.  Please visit their website for more information at tagsfortalking.com

Plum won the grand prize at the Design the Make a Difference showcase on May 22, 2019.  They also took gold in four, and silver in one, out of the seven possible categories of prizes.  Great job Mustangs!!!
 
 
OBlock/Holiday Park Middle School Team  
 
If you would, please congratulate Caroline Madden, Kebish Pius, Tyler Marotta and Tyler Yurisinec on a job well-done. Beginning in December, these kiddos began planning and executing their project for the Design to Make a Difference showcase. The team's goal was to design a product to be used by students with Sensory Processing Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder, and/or ADHD. We noticed products on the current market created opportunities for children with the mentioned disorders to find security and comfort; however, these products appear to be conspicuous. The team's goal, using a 3-D printer, was to create fidget toys that could satisfy the child while hidden in the front pocket. The garment created also offered compression around the waist and weighted pockets at the shoulders. Due to the design, children can make the jacket suit their needs e.g. remove the weights, leave the compression band loose or swap out the various fidget toys. From the outside the sweatshirt resembled that of any other wore by peers, but the inside reveals possibilities. 

Not only were the students able to complete the product, the team walked away with 5 metals! Please congratulate the kids on their 2 gold metals for Growth and Pitch (meaning sales pitch) and 3 silver metals for Innovation, Impact and Display. They deserve a giant pat on the back for their efforts!

We would like to thank the staff and administration at Holiday Park and O'block for their continued support, understanding and flexibility. A special thank you goes out to Mrs. Kim Szafranski for her expertise and guidance. 

I have attached a video of the showcase, if you would like to see what the students have accomplished. 

Design to Make a Difference Video - Click Here 
 
     
 

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