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September 2014

Nature's Engineers   

Moose in Great Sand Dunes Wilderness  

Marveling at an elk in Great Sand Dunes National Park (photo), it's easy to overlook the role of engineers in preserving - and accessing - America's pristine wild areas. Yet their contributions range from firefighting gear to critter crossings to campgrounds. Your eco-engineers will nest like the best in this month's activity marking the Wilderness Act's 50th anniversary. Happy trails!
Activity: Think Like a Bird!


bird feeding young in nest  

In this activity from the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, students in grades 2 to 4 learn about wildlife habitats, environmental engineering, and the complexities of nest construction by attempting to design and build a nest themselves.


View Activity


Live Like an Animal (Grades 6-8)  

Map the Green Space (Grades 5 -9)  

Where's Your Teacher? (Grades 7-9)  


Grades K-5  |  Grades 6-8  |  Grades 9-12


Feature: Sculptures Revive Coral Reefs



Every so often, a project comes along that not only bridges art and science but also manages to leave you completely awestruck. Such is the case with the haunting underwater sculpture of Jason deCaires Taylor, a Mexico-based artist and scuba diver whose installations restore coral reefs.  


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National Park Service Promotes STEM

Turning Air Into Water

7th Grader Invents Solar Tree



Spotlight: A Showcase of Bright Ideas

Want to spark invention? The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office does. Highlights of its updated website for kids, teens, teachers, and parents include a video series on innovation created with NBC Learn and the National Science Foundation that covers such topics as 3-D printing, self-driving cars, and synthetic diamonds.   


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Einstein Fellowships for STEM Teachers. -- Applications are due Nov. 20 for this unique opportunity to work on national education policy at a federal agency. Learn more.

SMART Competition.
-- High school students apply their knowledge of science, math, and physics to design an intelligent building, in this case, a school's gym. Learn more.

TEAMS Competition.
-- Students address real-world energy challenges in the 2015 Tests of Engineering Aptitude, Mathematics and Science. Register today. Learn more.

Code Studio. -- To encourage more schools to teach computer science, has created a set of free tools, lessons, curriculum, and teachers' dashboard. Learn more.

Google RISE Awards. -- Receive up to $50,000 to start or expand a computer science program for girls or underrepresented groups. Apply by Sept. 30. Learn more.

STEM Teacher Scholarships -- Apply by Oct. 10 for Engineering is Elementary's professional development workshops. Funds include travel to Boston. Learn more.

Verizon Innovative App Challenge. --
Middle and high school students need not be techies to dream up a $20,000 winning app idea. Submissions due Nov. 24. Learn more.

Explore Our Site: Helpful Links for Teachers

Cynthia Breazeal Wants You to Make Friends with RobotsJetman: Flying Soon to a Landmark Near YouUnderwater Scooters are the New SCUBAEbone Pierce - Mechanical Engineering StudentTurning Air into WaterVertical Forest Coming Soon to Milan
bulletPrepare your students for engineering school with these 10 Essential Steps.
bulletChange your students' perceptions of engineering students.
bulletIntroduce your students to young engineers who are already making a difference in the world.
bulletStay up-to-date with cool engineering innovations.
bulletFind out about the engineering design process.
bulletLearn about the different types of engineering.
bulletRead our magazine online.
bulletCheck out all the items in our
bulletExplore lesson plans and class activities.
bulletView our archive of past newsletters.


If I Were an EngineerIt's never too early to learn about engineering. Along with our 5th Edition magazine and classroom cards, Engineering, Go For It offers an engaging children's book in its collection of learning materials.


"If I Were an Engineer," from the American Society for Engineering Education, is a fun, 40-page rhyming book that introduces engineering to kids 5 to 8 years old. It includes a parent page that explains the various engineering disciplines.  


Price: $7.95


Now available in our store.   


About the eGFI Teachers' Newsletter


Delivered each month to your email inbox, our newsletter is packed with lesson plans and activities, resources, feature stories, and the latest developments in K-12 engineering education. eGFI is part of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), a non-profit organization committed to enhancing efforts to improve STEM and engineering education.   

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eGFI Wins Award
Our January 2014 teachers' e-newsletter, "Olympic Engineering," took top honors for publication excellence in the 2014 APEX competition.