Officially, Engineer’s Week starts February 22, but Collegiate first graders started a few weeks early. Students have been learning about different types of engineers and what they do. This new multi-week unit includes science lessons on materials, measurement, design requirements and process improvement.
At the beginning of the unit, the first graders learned why certain materials are used for specific applications. Their design challenge was to choose the best materials to create a soundproof package. Next, the measurement unit reinforced the importance of choosing the right measurement tool for a specific job. They practiced accurately measuring and estimating short and long distances. This week, students are learning about design requirements and applying this knowledge to a hands-on project to design a shoe using everyday materials such as pipe cleaners, aluminum foil and cotton balls.
The Engineering Unit will culminate in a multi-disciplinary project that highlights Industrial Engineering. A math lesson with Ms. O’Shea will help students understand the costs of running a fictitious Toy Factory. In technology, Ms. Hurd will help students create a layout of the factory floor. Finally, in science, Mrs. Clore and myself will assign each child a job in the factory. They will then simulate the process from customer order to product delivery. The first graders’ final challenge will be to eliminate waste and improve the efficiency of their Toy Factory.