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Students learn about engineering design process

Posted on 06/09/2021

A group of students who recently participated in a new WECDSB contest designed to teach them about the engineering design process have already gained a huge competitive edge if they are planning on pursuing a career in the profession.

“In the beginning it took a lot of research and trying to come up with ideas,” said Izabella Ferreira, who was a member of the Cardinal Carter Catholic Middle School Grade 7 winning team in the first ever STEM-tastic Challenge event. The students were tasked with designing and building a functioning roller coaster out of recycled household items. 

“As we started building there were a lot of challenges and we had to change our ideas and come up with new things through trial and error, which really helped us improve our rollercoaster,” she said.

That was music to the ears of Kim Capaldi, the WECDSB’s STEM Lead, who helped create the challenge, as well ast the board’s elementary STEM curriculum.

“That whole engineering design process is actually what real engineers use in real life,” she said, “so having students go through that process actually teaches them a lot of things besides just the science and the math.” 

Besides the winning team of Ferreira and her partner Lauren Quenneville, the team of Regina Pacheco-Hernandez and Fatima Mughal from Corpus Christi Catholic Middle School took top honours in the Grade 8 category.

Check out this great video about the contest.

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