Design, Modeling and Prototyping Parts 1 and 2 introduce students in grades 5 and 6 to the characteristics of an entrepreneur and the concept of social entrepreneurship. The course also provides students with opportunities to learn about and apply the design process to creatively solve problems. Students are introduced to the course problem in the first activity and are asked to make connections to the problem throughout the lessons in each unit. Students learn and utilize methods for communicating design ideas through sketches, solid models, and mathematical models. Students will understand how models can be simulated to represent an authentic situation and generate data for further analysis and observations. Students work in teams to identify design requirements, research the topic, and engage stakeholders through presentations. Teams design a toy or game for a child with cerebral palsy, fabricate and test it, and make necessary modifications to optimize the design solution.
The Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center offers App Invention for Entrepreneurs in grades 7 and 8. This course continues to build upon the principles of entrepreneurship that were taught in Design, Modeling and Prototyping. The course also introduces students to the field of computer science and the concepts of computational thinking through the creation of mobile apps. Students are challenged to be creative and innovative as they collaboratively design and develop mobile solutions for engaging, authentic problems. Students experience the positive impact of the application of computer science to society as well as to other disciplines.
Beginning in fall 2022, the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center will offer Computer Science for Innovators and Makers for grade 8. This course teaches students that programming goes beyond the virtual world into the physical world, and that physical computing is at the core of many new products from home assistants and smart homes to toys and games. Students are challenged to creatively use sensors and actuators to develop systems that interact with their environment. Designing algorithms and using computational thinking practices, students code and upload programs to microcontrollers that perform a variety of authentic tasks. The course broadens students’ understanding of entrepreneurship and computer science concepts through meaningful applications. Teams select and solve a socially relevant problem related to wearable technology, interactive art or mechanical devices.