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Summer SAVY, Session 1 Day 2, Intro to Chemical Engineering (1st – 2nd)

Posted by on Tuesday, June 11, 2024 in blog, SAVY.

Good afternoon SAVY families! 

Today was a very insightful day for students! Today’s learning objectives included: I can use the engineering design process; I can explain what a process is and how a process is considered technology; and I can conduct and explain market research. 

We began our day by reviewing the term “process” as it applies to a series of steps performed in science or everyday life. We reviewed various types of processes in daily life: brushing teeth, following a recipe, and even bedtime routines. Students wrote directions for various processes, such as making a pizza or baking a cake, and then we had fun rearranging and placing the steps of the processes in the correct order. We explained the importance of using both words and pictures to describe processes and directions. 

We finished reading the story of Michelle’s MVP Award, the story that will guide our exploration of the process of playdough creation and improvement. The students were engaged and excited to complete this story and hear about Michelle’s victory at the end of the story (receiving the MVP award from her coach). 

After lunch, we explored the role that chemical engineers play in product research. We also learned about consumer surveys and how they help inform product development by creating our own “juice product,” and then, we surveyed another class on their preferred color of juice. We used a combination of 10 drops of color selected from 8 different shades–the combinations were quite creative and varied! It was an awesome experience to imitate the actions and processes of chemical engineers conducting life-like product research. 

We had an exciting time with our outdoor recreational activity, soaking up some sunshine and warmth! In our afternoon session, we explored matter and its three phases. Discovering more about properties of matter like solubility and density is preparing us for our playdough improvement process, which will begin tomorrow! We then put our earlier learning of the engineering design process into practice as we engaged in more STEM building challenges, focusing today on improving our designs and working with different materials than we did yesterday. Students engaged in challenges including building different landmarks, 3D shapes, and symbols from holidays around the world. The creations were amazingly detailed and well thought out with students’ development of engineering-type thinking becoming evident in their designs. 

Questions for further exploration with your students could include:  

  • What is the engineering design process, and how do engineers utilize this process in their daily jobs?  
  • What type of engineering career interests you?  
  • What is a product you could conduct consumer research on? 
  • What STEM challenge(s) did you complete today, and how did you improve upon your designs? 

We look forward to seeing all of our engineers tomorrow to continue learning!