da Vinci Project Places Teachers in the Classroom

Engineering is a seldom-taught discipline in most secondary school systems nationwide. Yet engineering incorporates many of the core science and math subjects taught in America’s middle and high schools. The School of Engineering developed the da Vinci Project expressly to help teachers link the traditional math/science subjects with engineering in classrooms throughout New England. This outreach program debuted in 2000 as a means to inspire more high school students to seek an engineering education.

Teachers seeking to integrate engineering concepts into their curriculum will want to apply to participate in the 2007 da Vinci Project, a unique one-week residential short course for math and science teachers. This year’s program will run July 16-20, 2007 at the Storrs campus. The deadline for applications is June 22.

This immersion-style workshop will introduce regional teachers, guidance counselors and others for grades 7-12 to core engineering concepts and hands-on experiments to transport back to the classroom. Participants will select one of seven course modules for an intensive 3-1/2 day program followed by a one-day overview with demonstrations. Each year, the da Vinci modules focus on subjects of relevance to society’s interests. The 2007 program includes optional modules in biofuels, construction of a fuel cell, mathematical optimization and game theory, biomaterials, fiber optics and basic digital/analog circuits, explorations in polymer science, and global warming and dimming effects.

Teachers can earn up to three continuing education credits for attending the da Vinci Project. The week’s activities also include tours of engineering laboratories and seminars on topical subjects.

Published: May 16, 2007