July 26, 2021
July 26, 2021
July 19, 2022
Diversity and NSF Grantees Poster Session
Interactive science centers are in a unique position to provide opportunities for engineering education through K-12 field trip programs. However, field trip programs are often disconnected from students’ classroom learning and K-12 teachers lack the engineering education background to make that connection.
Explore Engineering (pseudonym for blind review) is a 3-year project funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) program Research in the Formation of Engineers (RFE). The primary goal of this project is to develop and test engineering education modules that link K-12 students’ classroom learning to field trip experiences in an interactive science museum, increasing student learning and extending the field trip experiences. Each Explore Engineering module consists of one 50-minute field trip program completed at an interactive science center and curriculum for three 50-minute lessons to be implemented by the classroom teacher before and after the field trip program. Our poster will present both development and research outcomes.
Development accomplishments. To date, we have developed and tested 3 field trip programs with over 4000 K-12 students and full modules with a subset of these classrooms. This year we are developing additional in-person modules as well as virtual modules that support remote learning. Each of the field trip programs engage students in an engineering design challenge from designing an object that hovers in a moving column of air to designing a patch for a greenhouse on the moon to modifying a structure to reduce swaying in an earthquake. The classroom activities provide opportunities for students to develop science and engineering ideas that augment the engineering design challenge and to reflect on the field trip experience.
Research accomplishments. Our research has focused on using an iterative design process to inform design principles used to develop the engineering field trip programs and curriculum modules. We will present design principles for coordinating classroom and field trip programs, for accommodating different grade levels, and for engaging diverse audiences.
Harlow, D., & Skinner, R., & Muller, A. (2021, July), Engineering Explorations: Connecting K-12 Classroom Learning and Field Trip Experiences through Engineering Design Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. 10.18260/1-2--37061
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