Patty Cooke

Patty Cooke
Hello! I work as a communications assistant here at Pitsco, editing, writing, helping with publications, and working with other departments to help create awesome STEM materials and resources. I learned my love of storytelling from my dad, who constantly entertained me and my 11 siblings with the most fascinating, albeit fictional, stories. His tales kept us out of our mother’s hair for a while and probably saved her sanity. Our blog posts aren’t fictional, of course, but I still enjoy infusing the same amount of fun that Dad put into his stories. I hope reading these posts brings you equal enjoyment.

Recent Posts

Your next STEM mentors: Senior citizens

Posted by Patty Cooke on August 22, 2018

National Senior Citizens Day was earlier this week (8/22/18). First designated as such in 1988 by President Ronald Reagan, National Senior Citizens Day recognizes the importance of senior citizens in our personal lives as well as in our communities (EMS Safety).

As we’ve all seen, senior citizens have a lot to offer, including time, patience, and love, and they are overwhelmingly willing to offer it up freely! At least one center has recognized the importance of senior citizens and the value they bring to children. Providence Mount St. Vincent in Seattle, Washington, houses both an elderly care facility as well as a licensed child care center called the Intergenerational Learning Center. Here, young and old sit side by side, participating in music, art, and other activities. The nursing home residents serve as friends, mentors, and stand-in grandparents while the children, who see everything through eyes of wonder, provide laughter, joy, and boundless energy (Providence Health & Services).

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Topics: Hands-on Learning, Authentic Learning, Careers, STEM, Culture, IDEAS & INSPIRATION, IN THE CLASSROOM

Back to school: Make it a great year!

Posted by Patty Cooke on July 30, 2018

As educators well know, the beginning of a new school year can be overwhelming for all involved. Parents are anxious about leaving their children in the hands of others. Students are anxious to do well and not fall behind. And teachers, from first-year educators to veterans, are anxious to instill knowledge into a new group of students while managing their classroom and keeping an eye on the health and emotional well-being of each child.

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Topics: Teacher Development, Resources, Culture, Teacher Resources, IDEAS & INSPIRATION

Amelia Earhart: Celebrating a legacy of adventure

Posted by Patty Cooke on July 24, 2018

July 24 is National Amelia Earhart Day, a day that honors her birth as well as her achievements.

Born Amelia Mary Earhart on July 24, 1897, (in Pitsco’s home state, and more specifically in Atchison, KS) Earhart began challenging the notion of what girls could do at a young age, eschewing expected female norms for climbing trees and hunting rats with a .22 rifle. She even collected news clippings about women succeeding in traditional male fields (Amelia Earhart).

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Topics: Hands-on Learning, Career Expeditions, STEM Expeditions, STEM, IDEAS & INSPIRATION, IN THE CLASSROOM

It’s Great Outdoors Month®! Let’s go camping!

Posted by Patty Cooke on June 21, 2018

June is Great Outdoors Month®. And what a perfect month it is to get outside and enjoy all that nature has to offer! The weather is nice, school is out or coming to a close in most areas, and the outdoors beckons us like never before. Plus, the Great American Campout is this Saturday, June 23. So it’s exactly the right time to join in on the fun!

Camping, one of many outdoor activities, always brings back fond memories for me. Every summer without fail, my parents loaded up the van with food and drinks, along with my brothers and sisters and me, and we went to my grandparents’ cabin in Fall River, Kansas, at least once, if not several times throughout the summer. At the cabin, being outdoors was the name of the game. We went fishing, swimming, and boating at Fall River Lake; shot off fireworks in the large, open area behind the cabin; and spent most of the days and evenings outside playing with cousins and listening to the grown-ups relax and enjoy each other as well.

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Topics: Hands-on Learning, 21st Century Skills, Activities, Social and emotional learning, STEM, IDEAS & INSPIRATION, BEYOND THE CLASSROOM

‘I’m ready for the next Expedition!’

Posted by Patty Cooke on June 18, 2018

Hands-on curriculum renews passion for learning in teachers and students

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Topics: STEM Expeditions, STEM Units, Middle School, IN THE CLASSROOM, Authentic Learning