On Friday, April 13th, Discovery Education and Velocity joined forces with Mecum Auctions for the very first “Mecum Challenge” in Houston, TX. I was incredibly lucky to help host the event for twenty-five middle school students from Houston ISD.
Prior to the challenge, we sent the students a series of assignments to familiarize themselves with the Velocity Channel, Mecum Auctions, the history of cars and elements of film.
The event began with Dana Mecum talking to the students in a private room. He’s an engaging storyteller and talked about all of the hard work, dedication and challenges he has faced over the past 25 years.
After snapping a picture with Dana, the students were off on their scavenger hunt on the floor of the Mecum Auction. They had a series of questions they had to answer and used a Sony Bloggie to record their answers. Questions ranged from “What is the job of a car’s transmission?” to “Pistons move back and forth in an engine to create rotational movement. What are the usual three ways that pistons are arranged in an engine block?”
After the scavenger hunt the students reviewed the answers with the Mecum team. They were also taken on an exclusive back stage tour of what goes on behind the auction block, as well as a tour of the Velocity production truck to see what goes into filming a live TV event.
After an exciting day at the Mecum Auction, the students were asked to share their biggest take-away. Many of the students were surprised at how much science, technology, engineering and math went into an event like the Mecum Auction. You could see the lightbulbs going off as they connected the dots from what they were learning in class to how it can be applied in a real world setting.
It was an honor to be a part of this amazing event. These 25 students from Houston ISD left with a sense of excitement and a better understanding of the importance of STEM education.
If you are looking for ways to promote STEM through a topic like cars, take a look at the following resources:
- Mecum Challenge website: http://www.discoveryeducation.com/MecumChallenge/
- STEM and Cars theme page on Discovery Education: http://player.discoveryeducation.com/index.cfm?guidAssetId=4D1BE3E1-5E98-4099-B303-152E491C696F