Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Kids as Engineers: Harnessing the Potential


We are a high poverty school and one of the challenges our students face is picturing a "big" future for themselves. Some of our kids don't have the resources to imagine and believe that they can achieve success they don't see today. 

To that end, we are spending time exploring cool STEM jobs through May. Another goal I have with this focus is helping kids bust stereotypes kids have about Scientists and Engineers.   The most difficult part is narrowing the field when presenting choices to kids. Last week we saw amazing things while learning about Marine Biologists.

I am always inspired by kids who believe in themselves and their vision. Because so many of our students don't, I jump at the chance to show them kids who take chances and make differences.. William Kamkwamba's story fits the bill perfectly. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind is a perfect chance to discuss the role and Engineer has and who exactly is an Engineer? The questions go on and on....

The video from YouTube brought the story home for our kids, I especially think the kids engaged when they saw William's village and his electrical wiring.