UNC-Greensboro Researcher to Speak on Educational Equity

Elementary engineering reframes what it means to be "smart"


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Dr. Heidi B. Carlone will present her research on the Engineering is Elementary® (EiE®) curriculum at the Museum of Science, Boston at 1:00 PM on Tuesday, June 2, 2015. Carlone, an associate professor of science education at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro, brings educational equity front and center in her research agenda. In this invited presentation, she’ll apply theoretical lenses from the fields of anthropology and sociology to investigate how learning with EiE affects the way diverse student groups develop identity.

At issue is the current reality in America that students who are black, Hispanic, or from low-income families are less likely to grow up to be scientists or engineers than their middle-class white classmates. To understand why youth from these under-represented groups face such a tumultuous and difficult path to STEM careers, Carlone observes and interviews students and teachers in classrooms that are using the EiE curriculum. Her presentation will explore the processes by which students end up labeled "smart" or "struggling," and how creating a local cultural definition of "smart engineer" may affect a student’s educational trajectory.

The event starts at 1:00 PM in Cahners Theater at the Museum of Science, Boston, and is free and open to the public. Use the Museum parking garage and bring your ticket to the information desk in the lobby for validation. An EiE representative will direct you to the theater.

About Engineering is Elementary

  • EiE is a project of the Museum of Science, Boston, developed at the National Center for Technological Literacy with support from the National Science Foundation.
  • The EiE curriculum includes 20 units that integrate science topics with a specific field of engineering.
  • Through the use of storybooks, EiE introduces students to children from different cultures and backgrounds who are trying to solve engineering problems.
  • EiE students as young as six years old conduct their own experiments to collect the data needed to solve a similar problem using a five-step engineering design process.
  • EiE is an award-winning curriculum that helps educators address state and national standards. It's used in every state in the nation and has reached nearly 8 million students.
Engineering is Elementary