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Mrs. Brubaker Locker
3/1/13 12:00 PM
3/1/13 12:25 PM
3/1/13 11:11 AM
3/1/13 11:13 AM
STEM Charter Launches a Satellite!
Project Da Vinci CubeSat team from STEM Charter

North Idaho STEM Charter Academy High School Students to Launch a Satellite

When you were in High School, did your school have a football team?  Probably!  Did your school have a basketball team?  Most likely!  Did your high school have a Satellite team?  Probably NOT!  North Idaho STEM Charter Academy high school students will be launcing a nanosatellite, known as a Cubesat, during the first quarter of 2018..  As a part of their educational mission, NASA selected the Project Da Vinci team as the only high school to launch in in this round, among other prestigious institutions, such as the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and MIT.  The CubeSat, so named for its shape of a four-inch cube, will be unique because it will enable people around the world to Tweet from space, conduct BitCoin transactions from space, and educate students around the world about space.  Watch for the Project DaVinci Kickstarter to launch at the end of September and follow the team on social media! Visit the website to learn how schools around the world can register, as well as how to enter the Space Propulsion Challenge!



Welcome to Project time at North Idaho STEM Charter Academy!  We are learning many skills, including teamwork, time management, communication, and technology.

My name is Mrs. Brubaker, and I wear several different "hats" here at the North Idaho STEM Charter Academy, including  Project Coordinator and Schoolwide EnrichmentSpecialist.  My background includes a Masters' Degree in Gifted Education from the University of Connecticut and over 20 years of experience in the field of gifted education.  I have had the privilege of coaching FIRST Lego League teams for over five years, one team which was selected as one of only six teams in the world to attend the World Festival in Copenhagen, Denmark. Our 2014 STEM Charter First Lego League team was selected to attend the Canadian International Invitational tournament in Toronto, Canada.  I am currently serving on a national Lego Education Advisory Panel.  In 2012, I was selected as the Idaho State G.I.A.N.T.S. award winner, which stands for the Governor's Industry Award for Notable Teaching in Science.  My son recently graduated from  Rice University in Houston, Texas, with a major in Mechanical Engineering with an emphasis on Aeronautical Engineering.  His senior design project team created a dual containment drill that will be on the next Mars Rover.  In my spare time, I love to ride my black and white Paint mare.


The 2017-2018 Invent Idaho STEM competition and project display will be open to the public on Wednesday, January 3, 2018, from 6:30-8:00 PM and Thursday, January 4, from 8:00AM-noon..  The top projects will represent North Idaho STEM Charter Academy at the North Idaho Regional event at Silver Lake Mall in Coeur d' Alene January 12-14.  Winners at Regional will move on to State at the University of Idaho in Moscow March 2-3.

STEM Charter Academy young inventors certainly do shine!  Alexander Knoll, recently appeared on the Ellen Show, which has since been viewed by over 17 million people around the world! Could you have done that when you were in sixth grade?!


Josh McKenna, currently an 8th grader at North Idaho STEM Charter Academy, was selected as the winner for the Best Display at the i2016 National Invention Convention, held in May at the U.S. Patent Office in Washington, DC.  Josh's invention, the "Porta Potty Survival Kit" was featured on his unique display board, which is in the shape of a "porta potty" on a revolving turntable to enable the viewer to see all sides of his display.


Invent Idaho students received more major awards per number of attendees in 2016 than any other state, and in 2017, 6 of the 13 attendees received major awards, including Best Notebook, Jules Verne Award, and Best Display.  The head notebook judge actually stated that, "the Idaho logbooks are the best he has ever seen in 37 years of judging!"


The 2018 national I Cubed Challenge theme is "Well Being".  Students may invent any idea they wish for Invent Idaho; the I Cubed Challenge theme is totally optional.  If a student DOES follow the theme, parents may have the child enter the national on-line competition. 

Students will be doing all of their work on their inventions at school.  However, they should definitely be THINKING about invention ideas all of the time!  On Thursday, December 7 students should bring their display board and all display letters and materials to school to work on their display; on Thursday, November 30, students should bring a bag of supplies to  build their 3-D model during school.  Students will present their entrepreneurial "pitch" in class on Wednesday, January 3, at which time the final project is due.

Josh McKenna.jpg


STEM Charter FIRST LEGO League team wins at International competition!

"THEM Donuts", an 8th grade FIRST LEGO League team created STEM Charter Academy history when they captured first place for the FLL Core Value called "Gracious Professionalism"!  No other STEM Charter team has won at an International FLL tournament!  This personable and exceptional team earned the title over 79 other teams from around the world, including Japan and Brazil.

The 21st Century skills being taught at STEM Charter Academy, including collaboration, cooperation, communication, and teamwork, were exemplified by this outstanding team!  For further information, view the KXLY article here.



Mars Rover


Prodigy Northwest:  great newsletter for parents who love to provide opportunities for their children!



Creating Problem Solving as a Life Skill

Invent Idaho is an excellent opportunity to encourage a life skill in our students by encouraging them to become problem solvers.  Will they all become future inventors?  Probably not.  However, they will have gained the valuable self-image of themselves as a capable problem solver.  We hope to encourage the generation of numerous ideas, as well as to inspire our students creative talents and inventive spirits!  Parents, here's an idea:  rather than solving your child's next "crisis" for them, ask your child to generate possible solutions to their problem.  As they work through the process, students often find better solutions to their problems than we, as parents, might have thought of for them.  Encourage your child to let their creativity and inventiveness shine!


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