This year, the IEEE Albuquerque Section had another successful participation at the 2008 New Mexico Public Education Department’s STEM Symposium on June 1. Like in 2007, we put together a workshop to show teachers and students basic engineering principles while having fun. The workshop, titled “Breaking Chocolate” was presented by Turtle Haste, NBCT, MSED; Rebecca Kreitinger, Student Member IEEE; Zane Kominek, Student Member IEEE; and Hy Tran, Senior Member, IEEE.
IEEE’s Albuquerque Section provided financial support for this activity; the support helped provide 50 teachers with measurement tools that they can use in the classroom.
IEEE and Sigma Xi members also offered their names/contact information as possible mentors for teachers who want to test lesson plans from tryengineering.org.
You can download the handouts used for the “Breaking Chocolate” activity next:
- The PowerPoint presentation,
- A quick reference sheet of handy household items that can be used to calibrate size (dimension) and weight (mass)
- A flyer for tryengineering.org, with mentor names
- A simplified version of a quality function deployment tool that engineers use in decision making,
- Printable “uncalibrated” rulers
- Educator guide
- Student guide
Fifty teachers participated in the session (this was the room limit); and teachers participated in discovering the importance of standards in measurements; how to calibrate a measuring tool; and the design process to test the breaking strength of various types of chocolate.
The team has received feedback from the participants. All participants greatly enjoyed the activity, and will use this materials in their classes. Some participants would like to address lower grades (below 3rd grade) in the activity, and some participants would like more structure in the activity in the balance between exploration and structure.
The team intends to participate again in 2019, should NM PED invite us to do so.
As always, the IEEE Albuquerque Section thanks all the presenters for their dedication to improve public education in our state.
See some of pictures of the workshop: