Children are naturally curious about a million-and-one things. At any given time, they’re certain to ask: Why is the sky blue? How does this work? Where do babies come from?
We’re not about to touch that last one, but we do know where Internet comes from. Sure enough, the kids at Red Cedar Elementary School were curious about that, too.
Hargray was asked to provide an experiential learning presentation for the pre-kindergarten classes at Red Cedar as part of the school’s “Community Helpers” series. This gives students a chance to understand how certain tasks get done in the community, from how the mail is delivered to how ambulances get there so quickly.
Randy Avery, a cable maintenance supervisor at Hargray, talked about how Hargray connects people by providing internet, television and telephone services.
“Sharing our excitement and knowledge about the benefits our fiber network brings is a great way to emphasize the power of technology to children,” Randy says. “This presentation brought the internet to life for these students and let them see how it relates to their everyday activities.”
Students had an opportunity to touch the same fiber-optic cable that they use to stream their favorite TV shows and movies. Whether it’s a YouTube video teaching sign language or downloading the Lego Movie, they were amazed at how it all passes through miles and miles of fiber like the one in their hand faster than they could blink.
Students also toured the fiber truck and watched how Jesse Baker, one of our repairmen, stays safe while working 20-feet in the air inside the bucket truck. Naturally, this part of the day stole the show with the kids, who craned their necks skyward to wave at Jesse as he went up.
“It was great to see the kids light up like that as they put the pieces together and learned how their favorite shows and games actually get to their home,” Jesse says. “It makes me proud that my work is important to our community’s next generation.”
Jesse’s wife, Emalee Baker, is a teacher at the elementary school and she said that the students really enjoyed learning from both Randy and Jesse.
“This is the kind of hands-on, experiential learning opportunity that the students really respond well to, and opens their minds to opportunities in the STEM areas of study,” Emalee says. “Like reading a great book, seeing a play or hearing a concert for the first time, material that sparks interest and connects with students has long-term benefits.”
Energy is contagious. Remembering that millions of pieces of data are delivered every second of every day over our fiber network is amazing when you think about it. The excitement in their faces reminds us of our own excitement for this job. Sometimes, it’s OK to step back and say, ‘Wow. Technology is cool.’