The annual Vernier Engineering Contest provides a great opportunity for educators to showcase how they are creatively using Vernier technology to introduce engineering concepts to students. Contest entries can include activities such as introducing coding by reading Vernier sensors with Scratch, using sensors in the engineering design process, controlling digital outputs based on Vernier sensor inputs, integrating Vernier sensors with robotics platforms such as LEGO®, VEX®, or Arduino®, and so much more.
The deadline to submit your application for the 2019 Vernier Engineering Contest is February 15, 2019.
The winning educator, selected by a panel of Vernier experts, will receive $1,000 in cash, $3,000 in Vernier technology, and $1,500 toward expenses to attend either the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) STEM conference or the ASEE conference.
Tate Rector, an Engineering and Project Lead The Way teacher at Beebe Public Schools, challenged his 8th grade engineering students to present a solution (using Vernier sensors with LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Education EV3) to an everyday problem in order to make connections with the engineering practices identified in NGSS.
“Winning the Vernier Engineering Contest in 2015 kick-started our engineering program here at our school,” said Tate Rector, a teacher at Beebe Junior High in Arkansas and a former Vernier Engineering Contest winner. “While my 7th and 8th grade students used to think it was just fun or cool to see things explode or fly, evaluation of the data we collect using Vernier technology has helped them see the reason why we do the experiments.”
The deadline for applications for the 2019 Vernier/NSTA Technology Awards is quickly approaching. This annual awards program recognizes seven educators—one elementary teacher, two middle school teachers, three high school teachers, and one college-level educator—for their innovative uses of data-collection technology in the science classroom or laboratory.
Each winner, chosen by a panel of NSTA-appointed experts, will receive $1,000 in cash, $3,000 in Vernier products, and up to $1,500 toward expenses to attend the annual NSTA National Conference in St. Louis, Missouri, on April 11–14, 2019.
All current K–12 and college science educators are eligible to apply. The deadline for submitting an application is December 17, 2018.
Last year’s award winners, including Robert Hodgdon from Richmond Hill Middle School, Richmond Hill, Georgia, demonstrated a variety of ways data-collection technology can be used in and out of the classroom. Hodgdon engaged his students in real-world ecological investigations to help them develop STEM career readiness skills. This included students using Vernier data-collection technology, such as pH sensors, to understand the biotic and abiotic factors relevant to their local habitats including tidal marshes, ephemeral wetlands, and relic forests.
“Winning the Vernier/NSTA Awards provided us with a new collection of LabQuest® 2 interfaces, as well as new temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, and conductivity probes,” said Hodgdon. “Students are able to use these technologies during ecological activities and as an integrated part of their science instruction year-round.”
“The Vernier Go Direct Sound Sensor is a welcome addition to the family of bluetooth sensors giving our students a tremendous visual inspection into the world of sound. And it really does put a face on those eardrum-generated electrical pulses bouncing around inside their brains. Soon the students will be saying things like, ‘I thought that sound looked loud.’ And it will make perfect sense.”
With Go Direct Sound, students can capture and evaluate waveforms. Exploring the waveforms of various musical instruments has never been easier. Students can also use the sensor to measure wave amplitude and sound intensity level at the same time during decibel scale investigations. They can even take the sensor outside the classroom to measure sounds in their natural environment.
The sensor is part of the complete Go Direct family of sensors that offers teachers and students maximum versatility to collect scientific data either wirelessly or via a USB connection. These affordable sensors can be used in more than 300 teacher-tested experiments developed by Vernier and are supported by free graphing and analysis software, the Graphical Analysis™ 4 app.