Summer vacation doesn't mean a break from learning for some teachers in Hawaii who are learning how to use the science, technology, engineering and mathematics curriculum and soar to new heights.
Some elementary school teachers spent time Monday building programs and testing robots as part of the curriculum.
"What we're finding across the country is we have a skills gap, shortage of people trained in STEM programs nationwide. We have 3.8 million jobs unfilled, 20 million unemployed because employers can't find right the skills set," said Vince Bertram of Project Lead the Way.
"The majority of jobs is in the STEM field and we are shorthanded as a state and country. We need to get our kids prepared for jobs," said Hope Espinda of the Campbell-Kapolei Complex.
Elementary schools in Hawaii are participating and these teachers will take their knowledge and train other teachers in other schools.
"It's something you don't learn from a textbook. You learn it from project learning, problem solving, working together to get the end product," said Heidi Armstrong of the Campbell-Kapolei Complex.
A good way to get student interested is to get teachers excited first.
"One of my teachers, she was hesitant. She didn't feel strong in science, but by the end of the training she was ready to go," said Judy Wong, a Pohakea principal.
"Math & science aren't about taking tests. Skills and tools help solve problems," said Bertram. "Everything is related to STEM in some way so when learning, they get excited, engaged in learning math and science."
Building robots and having fun is a type of learning that is taking Hawaii's educators to new heights.
The PLTW program is active in more than 5,000 elementary, middle and high schools across the United States.