Our programs endeavour to:
- Set learning in a real-world context.
- Use narratives to develop and motivate students’ understanding of the place of engineering in the world.
- Demonstrate how engineers help people, animals, or society.
- Provide role models with a range of demographic characteristics.
- Present engineering design challenges that are authentic to engineering practice.
- Ensure that engineering design challenges are truly open-ended with more than one correct answer.
- Value failure for what it teaches.
- Produce engineering design challenges that can be evaluated with both qualitative and quantitative measures.
- Cultivate collaboration and teamwork.
- Engage students in active, hands-on, inquiry-based engineering.
- Scaffold student work.
- Model and make explicit the practices of engineering.
- Assume no previous familiarity with materials, tasks, or terminology.
- Produce activities and lessons that are flexible to the needs and abilities of different kinds of learners.
- Demonstrate that “everyone engineers” and everyone can engineer.
- Cultivate learning environments in which all students’ ideas and contributions have value.
- Foster children’s agency as engineers.
- Develop engineering design challenges that require low-cost, readily available materials.
The above principles have been adapted from: Cunningham, C.M., and Lachapelle, C.P. (2012). Engaging all Students in Engineering and STEM. 2nd P-12 Engineering and Design Education Research Summit, April 26-28. Washington DC, USA.