Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Students Make Strides in Engineering Education; School Offers Special Science Curriculum for Both Girls and Boys

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Students Make Strides in Engineering Education; School Offers Special Science Curriculum for Both Girls and Boys

Article excerpt

Byline: TRACY JONES

According to the National Science Foundation, only 11 percent of employed engineers are women.

At Jacksonville Country Day School, both girls and boys are exposed to science and engineering education - a curriculum that puts both genders on equal footing in a male-dominated industry.

The program, "Engineering is Elementary," is led by science specialist and teacher Shannon Johnson. And there is an annual engineering fair in January to showcase the students' efforts.

Johnson, along with 12-year-old engineering student Hannah Grewal, recently spoke to skirt! about the program.

WHAT IS THE "ENGINEERING IS ELEMENTARY" PROGRAM?

Johnson: It was a program developed by the Museum of Science of Boston. Every grade level studies a different type of engineering, and sixth grade studied ocean engineering. Their challenge was to design a submersible ... they researched a real submersible.

Grewal: We were in teams of six and we brought things from home, and we picked a submersible from online and tried to make a model of it. We picked the Deep Worker, and it was really big. It goes underwater and explores underwater and finds treasure.

WHAT IS A SUBMERSIBLE?

Johnson: It's not a submarine. It's small, generally one person can go in it. It is a machine scientists, usually they rent them and go down to the bottom of the ocean to collect data. And depending on what they're working on, they might collect animals that may live at the deepest parts of the ocean.

WHY WAS IT IMPORTANT FOR THE CHILDREN TO LEARN ABOUT SUBMERSIBLES? …

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