The story of Tyler Richards and Jonathan Thompson and their invention of a new ketchup bottle cap has gone viral in engineering education this spring. I wanted to share how I’ve been using this story in professional development with K-12 teachers.
PBS has a short blog post that is the perfect length for a quick reading. (See the post HERE.) The post provides the story of how these two students identified the problem (“wet bread is gross”) and eventually solved it.
I like to use this story after teachers have some familiarity with the Engineering Design Process from the Next Generation Science Standards:
- Define the Problem
- Develop Solutions
- Optimize Solutions
I simply ask participants to read the article and identify where the students are engaged in the 3 components of Engineering Design. Then we do a quick partner share and whole group debrief. Here are some findings that teachers have shared:
- There was a lot of time spent Defining the Problem
- Maybe we (teachers) need to provide more authentic opportunities for students to Define the Problem.. sometimes we just give students the problem predefined
- The students developed a lot of solutions before starting to optimize
- The students had to engage in argument from evidence throughout this process. In other words, argumentation isn’t just a science practice.. it’s an engineering practice also
The blog post gives teachers an opportunity to identify components of Engineering Design and make sense of some of the shifts in the NGSS. I hope you find ways to use this engineering story with students and teachers. Please share back what you’ve tried. A video of the ketchup cap invention is embedded below.
A TED Talk where Uri Alon discusses topics that connect to the nature of science, the “scientific method”, and science & engineering practices. Also wonderful lessons about collaboration, communication, persistence and failure. How might you use this video with K-12 students, college students, or in professional development with science teachers?
The Next Generation Science Standards have a clear and intentional focus on waves as a disciplinary core idea K-12. This is content that may be new for some of us and may be lacking in our science instructional materials. As we start to cobble together resources here is an interesting short video clip that helps learners to visualize sound waves… it’s pretty cool!
Click HERE if you cannot see the embedded video below.
The National Academies just released a short video on the importance of K-12 STEM education. This could be useful for professional development and building understanding of STEM education in the community. See the video embedded below or click HERE. Enjoy!
Posted in NGSS, STEM, Video
NBC Learn, NBC Sports, the National Science Foundation, and the National Science Teachers Association have partnered to provide resources for teaching science and engineering ideas related to the Winter Olympic Games.
Links to Resources: (NSTA will continue to post resources on the NSTA Blog during the games)
EarthEcho is an international non-profit environmental education organization led by Philippe Cousteau Jr. The EarthEcho website is a hub for short video clips and educational resources. Check out one of the EarthEcho video clips embedded below- What Happens When We Flush? The site has resources for educators which can be accessed with a free online registration.
Asapscience just posted a new video titled- Does Being Cold Make You Sick?
This could be a good video for having students engage in argumentation based on the evidence presented.
See the embedded video below.