The AAAS Science NetLinks Inventing Green Project has assembled a 15-member advisory board comprised of educators, experts in sustainability, authorities in invention education, and education specialists from AAAS.
"The members of this advisory board bring incredible experience and content knowledge to the project," said Science NetLinks project director Suzanne Thurston. "The board’s diverse specialties and careers, as well as the contributions they will make to the project, model the kind of cross-disciplinary thinking we want students to utilize when they are faced with a design challenge."
The advisory board is tasked with furthering the work of the project, which includes creating lesson plans at the middle- and high-school levels relating to invention, green design, innovation, and an emphasis on teamwork; best practices documents; a bibliography of related trade books; references to help educators find and use local mentors; videos with current inventors; and topical blog posts. This collection of resources will offer educators a pragmatic approach to bringing invention education into the classroom and engage K–12 students in the mind-set that will enable them to identify and begin to help solve the problems of the 21st century.
"The U.S. and the world is pressed with some major issues, such as global health, access to water, climate change, and food security. We need a new generation of inventors to address these and other pressing issues," said board member David Coronado, a program director at the Lemelson Foundation. "Our current education system focuses too much on rote memorization. We need students who have a strong STEM knowledge base, but, most importantly, are able to think critically, identify real-word problems, and have the creative confidence to turn ideas into solutions. Invention education addresses these issues."
Advisory board members also will take part in an online event in 2016 relating to invention education, green design, and the aforementioned collection of resources. This event will allow educators, inventors, and invention education experts to engage with each other and share experiences and teaching strategies for including invention education in the classroom.
"Invention education is worth the effort by educators, students, and beneficiaries as it is the truest form of inquiry-based learning that I have encountered," said board member Doug Scott, 2014 STEM Teacher of the Year in Massachusetts. "Not only do students have to find the solution, they more importantly have to identify the problem. The experience will put learning directly in the students' hands, minds, and hearts as they will truly care about the problem that they chose to solve."
Coronado added, "There are over 55 million U.S. students in grades PK–12. We cannot afford to miss this opportunity to train a new generation of inventors."
The advisory board members are:
- David Coronado, Lemelson Foundation
- Stacia Dreyer, Renewable Energy Center, University of Washington
- Leigh Estabrooks, Invention Education Officer, Lemelson-MIT Program
- Kirstin Fearnley, AAAS
- Constanza Hazelwood, Great Lakes Water Studies Institute, Northwestern Michigan College
- Bob Hirshon, AAAS
- Sarah Ingraffea, AAAS
- Amy Landis, Institute for Sustainability at Clemson University
- Kristin Moon, Portland Public Schools
- Lisa Palmieri, Holy Family Academy
- Joshua Schuler, Lemelson-MIT Program
- Doug Scott, Hopkinton Public Schools
- Maria Sosa, AAAS
- Renee Stockdale-Homick, AAAS
- Suzanne Thurston, AAAS
You can read more about the members of the advisory board here.
Photo Credit: Clipart.com.