Thursday, February 18, 2010
ENGINEERING CONTEST IN D.C.,
JOIN THE PRESIDENT IN SPACE CHAT
Congratulations to two middle-school teams from the Elkhorn Public Schools, who took first and second in a recent regional Future City competition, and were in Washington, D.C., this week, competing at the national finals. See http://www.futurecity.org/
Students from Elkhorn Ridge Middle School and Elkhorn Middle School designed and built tabletop models of a DURA -- Disaster Underground Relocation Area -- which was this year's theme for the student competition that is put on during National Engineers Week.
Three of the students got to visit President Obama along with students from three other states as he placed a phone call to American astronauts in the space station.
Kevin Riggert, principal of Elkhorn Ridge, said that experience and the Future City competition is a good example of how schools are teaching students 21st Century thinking skills, creativity, collaboration and real-world application. "It gives me shivers," he said. "This is what makes your job."
He said 34,000 middle-school students were in Washington for the event, so it was an honor indeed for the three Elkhorn students.
The students used simulation software, researched and wrote an essay and narrative about how the city would function, and gave an oral presentation to a panel of engineers. They worked with engineer mentors in this practical application of math, science, technology and engineering.
Riggert said his school's students were the only ones at nationals to use an outer space theme. He conjectures that is why some team members were invited to the White House. The team won a special award, he said.
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