Monday, October 3, 2011

BRE celebrates TSA Week

Today officially kicks off National TSA Week (Oct. 3rd - Oct. 7th). For those new to TSA, Technology Student Association, TSA is a national Career and Technical Student Organization that focuses on advancing and improving student achievement in the areas of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). It is dedicated to serving middle and high school students in 47 states, with a few fifth grade clubs around the country. TSA fosters personal growth, leadership, and opportunities in technology, innovation, design, and engineering through spirited competitions at District, State, and National levels. Students learn through hands-on projects that teach them about engineering design, team work, computer & technology skills, parliamentary procedures, problem-solving, robotics, and many more STEM skills that they can take with them into college and careers in their future. Manatee County schools have a commanding presence at both State and National levels. (Let the results speak for themselves, check out the results from the 2011 National TSA Conference.) There are currently six elementary schools in Manatee County with fifth grade TSA clubs. Braden River Elementary is proud to be counted among the six.

As part of the kick-off to National TSA Week, our chapter of TSA welcomed Mr. Jon Edwards, an electrical engineer working with Smith Seckman Reid, Inc., and one of our BRE parents, to share part of what he does as an electrical engineer with us. He showed us some of the blueprints of one of the projects he is currently involved with, and talked to us about the importance of teamwork. For most of the students, it was the first time they had seen a set of blueprints so close up. He pointed out some of the areas where the engineers and architects had to make changes to the design to fit the electrical needs of the room, indicating the inserts in cloud-like bubbles, and talked to the students about how the engineers were able to use computers to make and print out the blueprints.

The students now have a better understanding of the design and technology that goes into the making of blueprints, thanks to Mr. Edwards.

After that, the students worked on designing posters to celebrate National TSA Week, as well as to advertise and draw in more attention to their club. Look for their posters posted around the school this week.

National TSA Week concludes with a CTSO (Career and Technology Student Organization) Rally on Saturday morning for middle and high school students at Braden River High School. Elementary school advisors will be on hand at the rally to discuss the possibilities of our elementary students attending this rally for next year. Among the festivities at the annual rally are the spirited club specific canned food drive, and spirit stick contests at each level.

For more information about TSA, check out the national TSA site: and Florida's TSA site:, or check out BRE's own TSA page.


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