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Seven Superfun Eco-themed Engineering Activities

Posted by Cynthia Berger on Thursday, April 20, 2017

2016.07.19_Engineering_Everywhere_logo.jpgHappy Earth Day! Are you looking to incorporate some eco-themed activities into your STEM programs? Here are seven superfun curriculum units from EiE's Engineering Adventures and Engineering Everywhere. Engineering Adventures and Engineering Everywhere include project-based, hands-on units to help you implement engineering in a way that fits your time and budget needs. 

Hop_to_It_cover-resizedControl an Invasive Species

Cane toads are native to Central and South America. Farmers brought them to Australia to control pesky beetles—but instead they’re harming rare and vulnerable wildlife. The Engineering Adventures unit Hop to It: Safe Removal of Invasive Species calls on your powers of creativity as you design a humane trap for toads.

Explore Earth Systems with High-Flying Technologies

Did you know America’s space agency has an environmental mission? Yup, NASA researchers study planet Earth along with the other planets, building and deploying airborne and space-based observatories and sensors to learn about Earth systems like oceans, ice sheets, and forests. Do your own aeronautical engineering with the Engineering Adventures unit The Sky’s the Limit: Engineering Flying Technologies

Turn Cast-Offs into Cars

Recycling is big in Senegal! Kids often make their own toys by repurposing items that would ordinarily be discarded. The Engineering Adventures unit Go Green: Engineering Recycled Racers draws inspiration from this national engagement in recycling. Try your hand at engineering toy cars from recyclables, then compete in a Recycled Racer Rally!

Vertical_Farms_Cover-resizedTake Farming to New Heights

The world’s population keeps growing. How can we make sure that people in cities have easy access to fresh, nutritious food? One solution is growing food right in the city, in high-tech “vertical farms.” Check out the Engineering Everywhere unit Growing Up: Engineering Vertical Farms and explore this new and growing approach to farming.

Reduce Trash with Bioplastics

Plastic bags, plastic spoons, plastic containers . . . we’re used to throwing away “disposables.” But plastics pile up in landfills, taking up space and making a mess. The Engineering Everywhere unit Plants to Plastics: Engineering Bioplastics lets you try chemical engineering as you design and test new forms of plastic made from plant-based materials.

Fight Flooding—Control Stormwater Runoff

You don’t notice unless it’s raining, but stormwater runoff is a huge environmental problem. Cities are paved with hard surfaces that keep water from soaking in; it runs off, causing flooding and washing pollution into rivers, lakes, and oceans. With the Engineering Everywhere unit Don’t Runoff: Engineering an Urban Landscape, you redesign a cityscape to reduce runoff.

Insulated_Homes_Cover-resizedConserve Energy—Engineer an EcoHouse

Keeping your house warm in the winter and cool in the summer takes a lot of energy—and that energy usually comes from fossil fuels. The simplest way to reduce your carbon footprint is to use less energy, but can you do it and still stay comfortable? You’ll design and test an energy-efficient model home with the Engineering Everywhere unit Here Comes the Sun: Engineering Insulated Homes.

Have fun engineering!

Written by Cynthia Berger

Topics: Engineering Everywhere, Afterschool/Summer Camp, Engineering Adventures

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