2017 MRET Program

2017 Projects and Faculty Mentors

  • Mechanics of biology and wound healing (Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering), Faculty Mentor: Chelsey Simmons
  • Magnetic particles for biomedical applications (Biomedical and Materials Science & Engineering), Faculty Mentor: Jon Dobson
  • Mechanical effects on nucleus of cells (Chemical Engineering), Faculty Mentor: Tanmay Lele
  • Building and Testing Tornado-Resilient Housing (Civil Engineering), Faculty Mentor: David Prevatt

STEM is Elementary: Units Created by 2017 Participants

To request to borrow a STEM is Elementary Unit, please complete the on-line request form.


We Can be Engineers, Too!
Sasha Abreu, M.Ed.                        J.J. Finley Elementary School                                 2nd Grade
This is an introductory unit on the engineering design process. Students will follow the path of a young 14-year-old boy from Africa and how he became the village engineer, bringing hope and power to his people. They will then go through the engineering design process, themselves, to solve a real world problem when designing a paper flier.  The goal is to have students engage in many of the approximations of practice that engineers take part in so students can see themselves as engineers when completing their design challenge.

Wonderful World of Weather: Wind, Creation, and Imagination
Brunilda E. Lopez, M. Ed.             Littlewood Elementary                                           2nd Grade
This weather unit focuses on students learning the importance of the wind and how to use it properly.  The students will then apply that knowledge to design a windmill will engaging in approximations of practice that engineers use on a daily basis.  The teamwork done as student groups brainstorm, share ideas, and prepare their projects is extremely important to engineers and scientists.

Wind Tube Wonders: Building Prototypes Using the Engineering Design Process
Maddie McClinton, M.Ed.              Stephen Foster Elementary School                         4th Grade
This unit teaches students the engineering design process through creating prototypes and testing them in a controlled environment called a wind tube. Students utilize skills of real STEM practitioners such as maintaining a growth mindset, attending to precision, and fostering collaboration, while covering standards related to properties of matter.

Engineering a Minion Rescue
Kelly McGraw, M.Ed.                    J.J. Finley Elementary School                                2nd Grade
This unit will inspire students to see themselves as STEM practitioners by guiding them through each step of the engineering design process in an engaging way. The minions have been stranded on an island and students will need to save them by creating boats. They will research, test materials, budget, design, create, improve, and present their results. This unit integrates standards in science, math, language arts, and social studies by incorporating approximations of the work that STEM practitioners do.

Enchanted Engineering: Let’s Get Started!
Jan Seebeck, B.A.                            Littlewood Elementary School                               Kindergarten
This unit builds on fairy tales, which are already a part of the elementary curriculum, to introduce related engineering “challenges.” The challenges offer the perfect opportunity to integrate hands-on activities that cover many ELA standards, while also incorporating elements of the engineering design process as students create, design, plan and build. Yes, even Kindergarteners can be engineers! 

Flight of the Fruit
Ashley Whitehead, M.Ed.               Littlewood Elementary                                          K-2 Multi-Age
This unit contains several lessons that cover STEM approximations such as collecting data, working cooperatively, and asking questions.  Many cross-curricular standards are addressed throughout the unit.  In this unit students will use their five senses, creativity, and questioning attitude to explore a variety of fruit and the effects of gravity on said objects.

pHun with pHood
Brandi Wisecarver, BA                  Joseph Williams Elementary                                  K-5 Science
This unit allows for students to experience being a STEM professional using approximations of practices used in a laboratory facility. Science and ELA standards are applied to promote collaboration, fidelity, and note-taking while using the pH level of food to motivate the students to progress through the process of scientific inquiry. Through hands-on activities the students will conduct research, record and analyze data, and present their findings to their peers.