Lesson 1

An Alarming Idea: Designing Alarm Circuits

A Reminder for Emily / Grade 4 / Lawrence, MA

The EIE Curriculum

EiE - An Alarming Idea: Designing Alarm Circuits Lesson 1

A storybook introduces the engineering challenge and context. In this story, Emily, a girl from Australia, learns about electrical engineering as she attempts to design an alarm to remind her when it's time to do her chores.

Reflection Questions

How does George adapt EiE’s “What is Technology” prep lesson?

George makes some changes to the lesson to better connect it to the content of the electrical engineering unit and to reinforce the distinction between technology and natural objects.

  • Although the guide suggests placing simple technologies like plastic spoons and scissors in the mystery bags, George includes items that students will explore in the unit, such as alligator clips, batteries and mini solar panels. (2:45)
  • George places a vial of soil in one mystery bag so that his students have the opportunity to investigate and discuss a “non-technology.” (3:45)

How do the EiE handouts help students solidify their knowledge after completing the reading assignment?

The EiE handouts reinforce both the engineering content and the new vocabulary presented in the storybook.

  • When working on EDP handout 1-6 B, students reflect on all of the steps of the Engineering Design Process that Emily went through to solve her problem. (8:43)
  • The vocabulary handout 1-4 B helps reinforce the meaning of any new words that the students encountered while reading. (9:40)