Can your science class help Super Luke, Chewbeaker, and Han Solenoid save STEM and Project-Based Learning in the galaxy?
In January, when teachers across the country ask students what they did over the long holiday break, they’ll likely hear a majority of students chirping excitedly about finally seeing the long-awaited film, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (already breaking box-office records). Many of them will have seen it several times by then!
But do students understand the science behind the hit film (#StarWarsScience)? Can your science students navigate and solve the technological and engineering problems that befall the lead characters in STEM Wars: The F=(ma) Awakens (our Star Wars parody, below)?
The contest is open to middle-school and high school students. If you think your students can save STEM in the galaxy, here’s what your class could win:
(2) A $50 gift card to shop.iat.com (our new site for finding the best STEM learning tools for your classroom).
(3) Students’ winning solution to save STEM in the galaxy included in our STEM WARS Part II animated video (featuring our STEM hero, Super Luke), with credit attributed to your class.
(4) A feature writeup on your science class and their winning submission on Education Insider™.
THE BIG CHALLENGE:
“It is a dark time for STEM. Despite the enthusiasm displayed by courageous STEM teachers, students across the universe have become bored out of their minds from unimaginative lessons. Hoping the solution to the tedium resides back in Yotta’s hut, Super Luke dispatched his friends, Han Solenoid and Chewbeaker, to travel to Dacobalt and search for any Jedion tomes Yotta may have left behind.
Unfortunately for Han, Dacobalt is a tricky planet to land on, and just like Luke, he too crashed his ship into the swamp. Han and Chewbeaker are not equipped with the force powers of a Jedion to levitate objects. Luckily, Han and Chewbeaker have their trusty robot with them, H-N1L, but it’s been badly damaged in the crash.
H-N1L sparks into life blurting out unintelligible beeps and noises, but among the gibberish are the words “electromagnet”, “pulley”, “hydro pump”, and “evaporate”, before the unmistakable sound of a robot shutting down. Han Solenoid and Chewbeaker are now faced with getting their ship out of the swamp with no guidance from their robot. They would’ve panicked, but they know exactly who could engineer a solution to their quandary. Hope you students are close to their transponder…”
Insider Tip: Han Solenoid and Chewbeaker are renowned smugglers in addition to being STEM saviors, so they might have some useful things in their cargo hold…Also, there are lots of vines, trees, rocks, and other natural objects on Dacobalt. You might also be able to make a strong case that Dacobalt got its name from the large boulders containing cobalt ore littering the planets’ caves. We’d like to reiterate that a major factor in deciding the winning solution will be creativity (the science does have to be correct though)!
Submissions should include the following:
• Define the problem
• Define the knowns and unknowns
• Estimate values for unknowns and provide reasoning behind estimates
• Explain idea for solution
• Describe science topics involved in your solution
• Design an experiment to test the efficacy of your solution
• Carry out experiment and display and analyze the results to support your solution
• We encourage sharing videos and photos of your students in project-based learning action, solving this engineering dilemma to social media at #STEMWarsContest (sharing media is optional).
Submissions Accepted: January 1, 2016 8:30am EST through Jan 15, 2016 5:00pm EST. Upload a PDF or Word doc of your students’ awesome solution to getting Han Solenoid and Chewbeaker’s ship out of the swamp to superluke.iat.com/stem-wars (valid teacher name, school, zip code, and email will be required).
Winner Announcement: The winner will be chosen by our Curriculum Team on grounds of completeness, thoroughness, creativity, accuracy, and presentation. Deus ex machina will count VERY heavily against you in the creativity department. Winner will be announced by email and on Twitter (@ItsAboutTimeEDU / #STEMWarsContest). STEM WARS Part II will premiere here on Education Insider, on our Facebook page, and on our STEM YouTube channel on Jan 22, 2016 at 7:30pm EST.
Questions: Questions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
[This promotion is not in any way, in whole or in part, affiliated with the official STAR Wars®: The Force Awakens production.]
Have fun! May the force be with you!
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