In this article, Studying Engineering before they can spell it, teachers and students talk about how exposure to the innovative field of engineering at a young age offers more than a career path.
The type of exposure to engineering that young children are receiving in schools such as Clara E. Coleman Elementary School in Glen Rock, New Jersey, not only develops their vocabulary but also their interest in applied science and technology.
Here in Glen Rock, where students have long excelled at math and science, administrators and teachers decided to incorporate engineering into the elementary grades to connect classroom learning to real life, as well as to instill social skills like collaboration and cooperation that are valued in the work force, said Kathleen Regan, the curriculum director.
Opponents of early exposure to engineering argue that students are actually not learning the fundamentals of engineering. However, it seems the benefits of learning how to problem solve, work in groups and learn about the field far outweighs the argument.
It can never hurt to expose children to new academic areas, the earlier the better, right? The strategy of teaching children about issues and concepts as a way of educating both the students and their parents in similar topics seems to apply here as well. Children who practice working together and problem solving in school might be more excited to engage in problem solving at home. This may lead to a more innovative, understanding and autonomous individual.