SPICE: Science Projects Integrating Computing and Engineering
The SPICE project is addressing the critical need for curriculum materials that integrate science, engineering, and computational thinking. A three-week project-based curriculum unit engages upper elementary students in hands-on activities and a technology-supported inquiry curriculum. Students investigate the cause of urban water runoff and design school grounds with different surface materials in a way that minimizes impacts from this runoff. Students use a block-based computational modeling environment and a domain specific modeling language to develop a computational model of water runoff and investigate system model variables related to rainfall, absorption and runoff. They then use this computational model to test their engineering designs against various provided criteria. As part of the SPICE project, we have also developed assessments to measure student learning in this STEM+C environment, and professional resources to help science teachers lead NGSS aligned STEM+C instruction.
NSF Awards: 1742195
Grade Level: Grades K-6
Presented in: 2021 (see original presentation & discussion)