MONTVILLE, NJ – The Montville Township School District’s extended school year took on “Step into the Future” as its theme this year. The five-week program for special needs kids, designed to not let skills get rusty over the summer, meets at Cedar Hill Elementary. Every Friday, the program holds STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) events geared towards the theme. TAPinto Montville took a peek on July 26 to see what the students were up to.

Over in room 19, Eileen Horn and Kim Kao’s second graders were designing the home of the future with a partner. They had written about their ideas in their journals, and they had viewed a video of the Jetsons TV show from the 1960s.

Teacher Kevin Haugh explained to the fifth grade students that the Jetsons used so many technology items that we take for granted today, such as the Apple watch, Skype, flat screen TV and Google. A recent project the fifth graders undertook was designing the car of the future, and Kayla R. said her car would help save the environment because it uses water for fuel. Mounish said his car would fit six people and would take just one second for a trip.

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The students also watched a portion of a Jetsons episode – humming along to the theme of the show – and discussed what “futuristic” technology the family used that we have today. Then the fifth graders went about designing their home of the future with a partner.

Over in Katelyn Kung and Maureen LoPresti’s pre-kindergarten class, the kids listened to a robot story and then used construction paper to assemble a robot of their own.

Meanwhile, the seventh, eighth and ninth graders in Jana Lenox and Michele Dasti’s class assembled pizza box solar ovens by cutting a square in the lid, lining it with aluminum foil and black construction paper, then covering the hold with plastic wrap to form the oven.

“You have to preheat it by placing it in the sun for 45 minutes,” Dasti said.

What was on the menu? S’mores – layered graham crackers, flat marshmallows and chocolate bars, “baked” in the ovens for about eight minutes.

Eighth grader Karl S.’s rating as he munched? “I give it ten stars,” he said.

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