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Designing a Sustainable Neighborhood: An Interdisciplinary Project-Based Energy & Engineering Unit in the 7th Grade Classroom

Event Date: April 13, 2017
Speaker: Bob Loy
Speaker Affiliation: Instructional Coach, Creekside Middle School, Carmel, IN
Sponsor: Molly Goldstein and Senay Purzer
Type: Research Seminar
Time: 3:30 - 4:20 PM
Location: Arms B071
Priority: No
School or Program: Engineering Education
College Calendar: Show

Situating engineering design at the center of middle school energy curriculum is an engaging and effective way to encourage student learning of science and mathematics concepts. This seminar presentation describes the implementation of a fully integrated engineering, science, and mathematics curriculum as part of an energy unit using Energy3D, an open-source tool for designing, analyzing, and constructing energy-efficient buildings that utilize passive and active solar heating and cooling. The planning and execution of such an interdisciplinary collaboration include many aspects such as development, planning, student assessment, organizing student teams, coordinating with external stakeholders, and overviews of lessons in both science and mathematics classrooms. In this seminar, we will hear tips for success in collaboration among University partners, external stakeholders, and multiple 7th grade teachers. Students showed significant gains in science/energy applications in sun path and insolation, heat transfer, and graph interpretations after taking part in this integrated curriculum. Lessons learned show the importance of realistically contextualized design problems and emphasize collaborative teaching in such curriculums. This seminar will also share practical tips for success in collaboration among University partners, external stakeholders, and multiple 7th grade teachers.

Bio | Bob Loy is the Instructional Coach at Creekside Middle School, leading teachers in curriculum development, innovation and design and facilitating and growing partnerships with key community stakeholders.   He has previously taught a multitude of grade levels and disciplines including: 4th grade, 6th grade (Language Arts, Social Studies, Humanities, Science, and Math) as well as 7th grade Math.  In addition to his broad range of teaching experiences, Bob has also served on several curriculum writing and book adoption committees, lead multiple professional development sessions in both the K-12 as well as post-secondary setting.  Bob also served in an administrative role as the Math Department Chair and now serves as the Instructional Coach at Creekside.  He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from the University of Southern Indiana in 2004 and Master’s of Education with a focus in curriculum as well as his K-12 Administration License from Indiana Wesleyan University in 2009.  Bob has been an invited to share his unique, integrated design implementation at the National Blue Ribbon Schools Conference in Orlando, FL, and the Best Practices Showcase at the University of St. Francis in Ft. Wayne. Additionally, he partnered with Engineering Education PhD candidate Molly Goldstein in presenting at the Indiana STEM Conference at Purdue University, and will be speaking this June at Dekalb High School at the Intentional Innovation Conference hosted by the Indiana Department of Education.