The beginning of the school year is such an exciting whirlwind of change. Yet despite the challenges presented by changes in schedules, courses, classrooms, or possibly positions, all of us can always appreciate the newness of our students each year. With each new group of students comes the opportunity to improve upon what we’ve done in years past. The opportunity to adjust our lessons to meet the needs of our new students. Or possibly fix lessons that may not have gone as planned the year before.
In thinking about the ever-changing needs of our students and the purposeful planning we must undertake, I find such wonderful connections with the engineering design process as articulated in the recent curriculum and video launch, Science and Innovation, which was worked on by my fellow laureate Tom Jenkins. As teachers, we may not realize in the moment all the wonderful aspects of the engineering design process that are a part of what we do every day: we identify the needs of our students, think deeply about the way in which they engage in the content, anticipate possible student approaches/strategies, think about questions we would like to ask to make the learning goals explicit, construct a lesson we hope will engage all learners, teach the lesson, reflect on the results, and redesign. And we do this day after day. I look forward to working with the wonderful teacher-engineers both in my school and those joining me online! I truly believe we are involved in the most rewarding, ever-changing, design process.