Future Engineers

I came across this interesting article in the WSJ: Reading, Writing and Engineering about an engineering program that is being taught at the elementary school level.    The "…effort is being spurred, in part, by concerns that in math and science, American students are falling behind other countries — particularly such industrial competitors as Japan and South Korea."

The program focuses on getting kids to practice real world theory – making play-doh in a "scientific fashion" as opposed to teaching theory.  The article focuses on the corporate sponsorship (or self-interest) aspect of it and says that proponents are awaiting a release of a study this year to assess the impact of teaching engineering using these different methods. 

I wonder if the making play-doh really does equate to a higher interest in chemical engineering, or does it just wind up as "The time we got to make play-doh in class."

Any teachers or parents out there who have experience in a hands on science teaching program and the impact,if any, it had on the kids?


One Reply to “Future Engineers”

  1. I think this method takes away much of the fear many girls feel when approaching the maths and sciences. I worked a “Horizons” program for several years where the girls (4th-5th graders) picked workshops to attend where they learned about a math/science career and then got to do something hands-on related to that career. It was amazing to watch them get excited about a career that they had never considered as an option before!

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