WALTHAM, Mass., June 3, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) has funded a $37,000 grant to help teach engineering concepts and practices to elementary school students in Maryland's Calvert County Public Schools. The grant is part of a larger $2 million Raytheon initiative to help improve STEM education nationwide by expanding the use of Engineering is Elementary® (EiE®), an award-winning curriculum developed at the Museum of Science, Boston through its National Center for Technological Literacy® (NCTL®).
"Raytheon's generous support greatly expands our mission to bring engineering to elementary-aged children," said Museum of Science president and director Ioannis Miaoulis, who launched the NCTL to introduce engineering in schools and museums nationwide.
The Raytheon-Engineering is Elementary grant funds professional development for 25 teachers, who will attend a workshop to prepare them to use EiE with their students. Calvert County is one of four districts this year and a total of 17 schools and districts since 2013 to receive one of these Raytheon awards.
As part of the award, each teacher will also receive an EiE curriculum guide and a materials kit with everything needed to implement engineering activities in the classroom. In addition, county science supervisor Janel McPhillips has attended an EiE Teacher Educator Institute, qualifying her to prepare more teachers in the district to use the EiE curriculum.
"This is a great investment in the Calvert County schools," says McPhillips. "We'll be using the EiE unit on cleaning oil spills with all eleven-hundred of our fifth graders next year and linking the activities to our state standards for environmental literacy. We would not have been able to do this without the Raytheon scholarship."
"With the release of the Next Generation Science Standards in 2013, there's a new expectation that engineering will be integrated with existing elementary science curricula – and schools and districts need an effective way to do that," said Dr. Christine Cunningham, a vice president at the Museum and EiE founder and director. "We're really pleased to be able to offer support through the Raytheon scholarship program."
To date, EiE has reached nearly 8 million children, engaging students as young as six with hands-on, inquiry-based activities. The curriculum explores a variety of engineering fields – from electrical to mechanical to biomedical and more – and each activity is tied to a science concept commonly taught in elementary schools. Research shows EiE helps elementary students become more interested in engineering as a career, and also improves their learning of science concepts.
In addition to Calvert County, Maryland's Harford County School District was a scholarship recipient last year. "We were so excited to be awarded the Raytheon-EiE scholarship," says Amy Ryan, an HCPS teacher specialist in Elementary Science Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment. "We were already using EiE, but our science curriculum was recently realigned to meet the demands of the new Next Generation Science Standards, and our teachers were in need of professional development in Scientific and Engineering Practices. With Raytheon's support, additional teachers received essential professional learning experiences to implement more EiE units to challenge our students in various engineering fields."
About Engineering is Elementary
- EiE is a project of the Museum of Science, Boston, developed with support from the National Science Foundation.
- The EiE curriculum includes 20 units that integrate science topics with a specific field of engineering.
- Through the use of storybooks, EiE introduces students to children from different cultures and backgrounds who are trying to solve engineering problems.
- EiE students as young as six years old conduct their own experiments to collect the data needed to solve a similar problem using a five-step engineering design process.
About the Museum of Science, Boston
The Museum of Science, Boston is the nation's first science museum with a comprehensive strategy and infrastructure to foster technological literacy in science museums and schools across the United States. Having reached an estimated 8.2 million students and 88,700 teachers, its NCTL also received the National Science Board Public Service Award in May 2015. One of the world's largest science centers and Boston's most attended cultural institution, the Museum of Science introduces about 1.4 million visitors a year to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) via dynamic programs and hundreds of interactive exhibits. Founded in 1830, the Museum was first to embrace all the sciences under one roof. Highlights include the Hall of Human Life, Thomson Theater of Electricity, Charles Hayden Planetarium, Mugar Omni Theater, Gordon Current Science & Technology Center, 4-D Theater, and Butterfly Garden. The Museum also leads a 10-year, $41 million National Science Foundation-funded Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network of science museums. Visit: http://www.mos.org.
Raytheon's MathMovesU® program is an initiative committed to increasing middle and elementary school students' interest in math and science education by engaging them in hands-on, interactive activities. The innovative programs of MathMovesU include the traveling interactive experience MathAlive!®; Raytheon's Sum of all Thrills™ experience at INNOVENTIONS at Epcot®, which showcases math in action as students design and experience their own thrill ride using math fundamentals; the "In the Numbers" game, a partnership with the New England Patriots on display at The Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon; the company's ongoing sponsorship of the MATHCOUNTS® National Competition; and the MathMovesU scholarship and grant program. Follow MathMovesU and other Raytheon community outreach programs on Facebook and on Twitter @MathMovesU.
Raytheon Company, with 2014 sales of $23 billion and 61,000 employees worldwide, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, civil government and cybersecurity markets throughout the world. With a history of innovation spanning 93 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities in the areas of sensing; effects; and command, control, communications and intelligence systems, as well as cybersecurity and a broad range of mission support services. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass. For more about Raytheon, visit us at www.raytheon.com and follow us on Twitter @Raytheon.
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SOURCE Raytheon Company