Materials World Modules

An Inquiry & Design-Based Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Education Program

Materials World Modules Used as Supplemental Three-week Course (Jul. 2005)

Materials World Modules kits and booklets were used as part of the program for the Center for Talent Development this past June and July.

Veteran MWM high school teachers Kenneth Turner (Schaumberg HS) and Kate Heroux (Lake Forest HS) and middle school teachers Beatrise Revelins (Deerfield MS) and Charles Stempien (Deerfield MS) guided students through three weeks' intensive courses consisting entirely of MWM modules. The Composites, Concrete, Sports Materials, Biodegradeable Materials, Food Packaging, Biosensors, Polymers, and Smart Sensors modules, as well as the new Nanotechnology module were all used as part of the course.

The teachers report that the students were so excited about the modules that they arrived early to class each day, just to find out about what they would be covering a little bit sooner. The design projects were especially popular, as students were given a lot of creative room to play with.

Students engaged in activities such as designing a kite with fiber re-enforced materials and making a new food packaging product. One group of students designed a way to collect of the small particles that typically settle to the bottom of a box of cereal, another an insulated delivery capsule for hot chocolate.

A female student from Winnetka, Illinois, was very excited about the Concrete module, saying

"You learn the concepts better because it's hands-on...instead of just reading, you get to see and do. I was the official ‘weigher’ of the group, so I got to...find the mass and was pretty cool!"

She went on to say that she had had a conversation with an adult about concrete at her parent's dinner party, which she related was a very rewarding experience for her.




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