Food security—it’s a BIG issue! The Ohio STEM Learning Network’s 2019 Design Challenge is to work as a team to imagine, design and prototype a solution to increase food security in your life, community, or world. Students across Ohio are considering different aspects of this problem and proposing some very creative solutions.
Summit Road Elementary School is a STEM school in the Reynoldsburg school district. Grades 1 through 4 worked on the Design Challenge and will share their projects with the public at the school’s STEM Night. Each grade considered a different question.
1st grade: How can we sustain our garden through the summer?
2nd grade: How can we improve the transportation of food?
3rd grade: How can we, as entomologists, learn about the causes of bee decline, so we can better support the local bee population?
4th grade: How can we extend the Summit Road Elementary School’s growing season?
Students proposed sprinkler systems, food teleporters and boats; made seed balls to plant to provide flowers for bees; and designed hydroponic systems to allow food to grow indoors year-round.
In order to come up with a solution, students followed the design process:
- Define the problem
- Conduct background research
- Brainstorm solutions
- Choose the best solution
- Build a prototype
- Test and redesign the solution
The students were very articulate as they presented their work, explaining each step and what they learned as they went along. In addition, the 4th graders made videos to accompany their prototypes.
With this kind of amazing inventiveness and enthusiasm working on a problem, there’s definitely hope that a solution lies just ahead!