By fourth grade, students begin making up their minds about whether or not they like math. According to a U.S. Congressional House Hearing in 2009, the percentage of girls who say they would not study math anymore given the choice increases in 4th, 8th, and 12th grade from 9 percent to 15 percent to 50 percent respectively. Our goal at the STEAM Exploration Lab is to eliminate the possibilities of this occurring. By providing students in third through fifth grade with the experience of coding robots and designing objects using 3D printers, we’re showing our scientists that what they are learning in the classroom applies to some of the world’s coolest jobs.

For the 2018-19 school year, the Exploration Lab’s themes will be divided into three units aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards. These themes are Life Science, Earth and Space, and Physical Science. Engineering topics play an important part of all three themes.

The lab’s year-round technologies include: an interactive SMART Board; iPads loaded with apps related to our themes; zSpace, a virtual reality desktop computer; Dell Inspiron All-In-One desktops; a Makerbot 3D Printing Studio; Osmo; and an HP T2500 poster printer.

Classes spend two hours exploring the lab led by Mrs. Randi Schmidt. Our visiting Engineers work alongside students of the South Bergen Jointure Commission, creating new animals with adaptations to fit a particular ecosystem, engineering stomp rockets to Mars, and building robots programmed to navigate towns and cities.

Dash and Dot Video.MOV

Students are exploring robotics with Dash and Dot in this unit's Exploration Lab theme. They'll learn how to program the two robots, as well as use the robots' equipped sensors.

Current Topic of Exploration

Randi Schmidt

Exploration Lab

Randi's currently in her fourth year of working in the Exploration Lab. She has always loved to read and learn, especially in the areas of science and art. Advancements in technology are especially interesting to her, and being able to bring these technologies into the classroom and teach students new ways to learn always leaves a smile on her face.

In her spare time, she loves keeping our local beaches clean, promoting the welfare of animals, chasing after her 3-year old and curling up with her cat to read a good book. You can contact Mrs. Schmidt at

Previous Unit Plans

Biomimicry Curriculum Printable.pdf
Deep Sea Curriculum 17-18 printable.pdf
Mars Rover Curriculum 17-18 printable.pdf

Contact Us

Phone: 201-393-0475, ext 246

500 Route 17 South, Hasbrouck Heights, NJ 07604