Bridging Engineering, Science and Technology in Education
Thanks to a Bridging Engineering, Science and Technology (BEST) for Elementary Educators NSF grant, Salem State University elementary education majors are preparing to engage their future students in engineering activities. The grant provides faculty with the opportunity to participate in ongoing professional development in engineering content and pedagogy, develop engineering course integration modules for their courses, and engage students in engineering.
A collaboration supported by BEST with Salem State faculty Deb Mason-McCaffrey (chemistry and physics) and Patricia S. Bade (childhood education) brought education and physics students together to design, build and test parachutes. The education students were then able to help their practicum mentor teachers, who had participated in EiE professional development workshops, engage their students in other EiE units.
“Isn’t this what we want?” observed Bade. “Faculty who have professional development in integrating engineering in their courses, preservice students who experience engineering in their science and education courses, and mentor teachers who have participated in EiE workshops.” The result: everyone engineers.