FMS STEM Takes Cadets to New Worlds
Fishburne Military School Cadets Learn to Master Their Own Worlds
Waynesboro, VA — When Fishburne Military School Cadet Isaiah Scott (Staunton, VA) wants to get away from things for a bit, he only has to go as far as his laptop to immerse himself in world that is completely within his control. Scott has created his own 3-D virtual world using the Kudo Programming Language and Kudo Game Lab by Microsoft.
As a part of Fishburne Military School’s ongoing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) initiative, Scott and fellow cadets are unlocking worlds unimaginable only a few years ago.
Fishburne Military School Technology Instructor, CPT Roxanne Rodes, explains, “This activity not only helps cadets to learn how to program computers, but it allows them to be creative in a meaningful and tangible way. They have something to show for their work that they can take with them from class. This creation can be enjoyed wherever they go. Additionally, there is the added bonus that they are developing skills that they may apply to a career in the future along with developing problem solving skills now.”
Scott’s virtual world includes the elements of land, water, and a gaseous atmosphere. He has programmed some characters to behave as automatons, and others to move under the control of a player via keyboard in Windows and/or controller in Xbox.
Some of his characters are underwater characters (such as an octopus that wanders as an automaton and eats other characters). Other characters are under the control of a player such as a turtle he calls “Jeff” that is under keyboard and Xbox controller control.
Also included are robotic rovers that he has programmed to move across the surface of the land of his virtual world and interact with the environment in various ways.
He has programmed the winds and waves of the water to behave in the manner he chooses. He has made hills, trees, apples, and a blue sky. Additionally, he has added a compass that tells one whether he is moving North, South, East, or West in this virtual world along with a resource meter that lets one know when a character is “becoming tired, etc.”
Fishburne Military School is the oldest and smallest of all military schools for boys in Virginia. Its college-prep curriculum is built upon the structure of an Army JROTC program. FMS is designated as a JROTC Honor Unit with Distinction and may nominate qualified candidates to the United States Service Academies. Fishburne hosts one of only four Summer JROTC programs in the nation, accredited by US Army Cadet Command. For more information visit www.fishburne.org.