Improving lives through invention

Invention Education: Preparing Our Students Today for a Changing Future

U.S. Department of Education STEM Briefing Webinar will provide guidance on integrating innovation and entrepreneurship into curriculum

By David Coronado

One thing that 2020 has shown us is that our children face a future of new, more demanding and increasingly complex challenges. How do we prepare them not only for the workforce, but for a rapidly changing world? And how do we create the problem-solvers we need to help create the kind of future we all want?

A STEM Briefing webinar from the Department of Education will explore one answer, called Invention Education. 

Invention Education represents a transformational approach to learning that teaches the unique ways inventors find and solve problems. It combines STEM and transdisciplinary learning with a hands-on, self-directed approach. It also encompasses leadership and entrepreneurship skills that can prepare students for the 21st century workforce and marketplace. 

Advancing innovation and entrepreneurship is part of the federal government’s five-year Strategic STEM Plan, recognizing that many people and communities are being left behind in the innovation economy. This has resulted in both a talent shortage and an equity gap, excluding a large segment of Americans from the potential pool of idea generators and inventors that we need.

Invention Education can help instill these skills in a new generation of students today to meet the challenges of the future. 

For students, it helps develop problem identification, experimentation, collaboration, critical thinking, empathy and dealing with failure. It has also shown itself as an effective way to reach underrepresented students by showing them the practical applications of STEM while working on solutions to challenges in their local communities.

For teachers, Invention Education enhances – and does not replace – their existing efforts in key disciplines. It can be integrated into their current approach and curriculum to help create a deeper, more personal level of student interest, learning and engagement.

While we all contend with the educational challenges presented by COVID-19, Invention Education can help put students in the driver’s seat, empowering them to find and solve problems at a time when many things are beyond their control. 

A U.S. Department of Education Stem Briefing on Invention Education will be held on Tuesday, October 27, 1:30 – 3 PM ET, and will bring together representatives from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, The Lemelson Foundation, the Lemelson-MIT program, an educator and Invention Education practitioner from Portland, Oregon public schools and a National Inventors Hall of Fame inductee from Dell Corporation.

We will provide practical information and resources about how to integrate this transdisciplinary approach both inside and outside the classroom, and in remote as well as in-person instruction.

Click here to register, and join a growing movement committed to preparing students for a future that has yet to be invented.

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