What is STEM/STEAM Day?
STEM/STEAM Day is held annually on November 8. This day inspires kids to explore and pursue their interests in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math. It’s a great opportunity for STEM/STEAM professionals to hold K-12 outreach events. This year, the ITE STEM Committee wants to highlight ITE STEM Outreach Activities that help kids better understand on a topic that is important to everyone transportation safety.
What is the Safe System Approach?
The Safe System Approach is a new way of planning and designing for traffic safety that is rapidly becoming more widely adopted by the transportation community. The goal of a Safe System Approach is to design and operate our vehicles and infrastructure in a manner that anticipates human error and accommodates human injury tolerances with a goal of reducing fatal and serious injuries. When we think about creating a safe transportation system we need to recognize that people make mistakes and the human body can only tolerate a certain amount of physical forces. These principles are central to the Safe Systems Approach. The Safe System Approach differs from the previous safety practice because its focus is human-centered and fully integrates the needs of all users of the transportation system (pedestrians, bicyclists, older, younger, disabled, etc.). For more information about the Safe System Approach, visit https://www.transportation.gov/NRSS/SafeSystem.
SAFE ROAD USERS
We need your help! – We don’t currently have an activity related to this topic, so we challenge you to create an activity and submit it to us. – If accepted, you and your activity will be featured in a future ITE Spotlite and on the ITE STEM Resources Webpage
On July 31, during the ITE Annual Meeting and Exhibition, the STEM Committee hosted a workshop on how to K-12 STEM outreach in your local area. The workshop covered the following:
ITE joined professionals across the country to celebrate National Engineers Week: February 20th to the 26th. Hosted by the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE), this week is dedicated to increasing public awareness of the countless ways engineers positively contribute to the world in which we live and to motivating students of diverse backgrounds to pursue careers in engineering and technology. The 2022 theme is “Reimagine the Possible”.
ITE is excited to launch a complimentary “Imagine Your Transportation Life” social media challenge to provide K-12 students with a glimpse into the world of transportation STEM careers. Below is a collage of the postings showing how transportation engineers contribute to the profession.
Activities for All Ages
All Ages - Transportation Search
Elementary-High School - Traffic Design with Nature and RC Cars
Preschool and Elementary – Transportation Line Up
Preschool and Elementary – Traffic Waves with Marbles
Elementary - Traffic Sign Obstacle Course
Elementary – Snow Plowing
Elementary – Streets Have Personality Game
Elementary - Traffic Counts and Signal Timing
Elementary - Intersection Safety
Elementary – Friction and Ramps
Elementary/Middle School Activities
Elementary/Middle – Pedestrian Signal Timing
Middle - Paying Tolls
Middle - Traveling Around Town
Middle - Can I Stop In Time?
Middle - Traffic Engineering Equipment
Middle - Sign the Way
Middle - Points of Conflict
Middle - Analyzing Traffic Counts of an Intersection
Middle – Hallway Congestion
High - Circles, Arcs, and Tangents: the Geometry of Our Roadways
High - Roundabouts vs. All-Way Stop-Controlled Intersections
High - Transportation and Climate Change Action Hour
High - Transportation Trends and Tech Research
High – Considering the Safety Benefits of Autonomous Vehicles
In addition to ITE’s new activities, these sites all have transportation-related activities:
How to Put on Effective K-12 Outreach Programs
Educational Outreach: Everyone Can Do It!
Careers in Transportation and Engineering
Careers in Transportation Planning
Can Bike Manitoba
The following YouTube videos were prepared by Baltimore City (MD) Public Schools for the events in which ITE was involved, all based on careers in transportation.
These sites have information about transportation engineering and planning careers:
These sites have general information about introducing kids to engineering:
These sites have many K-12 activities but they are not necessarily transportation-related:
From this site you can order a set of interactive materials designed to be used in Primary Schools, Secondary Schools, Colleges and Universities to showcase careers in transport (from the UK):
Email us at STEM@ite.org and someone from our Committee will reach out and respond.
We encourage you to hold transportation-themed STEM outreach events throughout the month of November in celebration of National STEM Day.
National STEM Day is held annually on November 8th (aka “Innov8 Day”). This day inspires kids to explore and pursue their interests in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. It’s a great opportunity for STEM professionals to hold outreach events.
The ITE STEM Committee has compiled some STEM outreach resources for National STEM Day, including a series of pedestrian safety-themed STEM activities for kids of all ages (developed by the FHWA STEP Program) and general tips for STEM oureach.
Click on the handout picture below to open the PDF of National STEM Day outreach resources:
Have you wanted to do K-12 STEM outreach in your local area, but don’t know where to start?
Are you a seasoned K-12 STEM outreach volunteer who is looking for new tips and tricks to “up your game”?
On August 25, the STEM Committee hosted an interactive, virtual workshop for those interested in educational STEM outreach with students in grades K-12. This workshop featured presentation from ITE’s STEM Committee members on how to make your outreach both valuable and fun, while avoiding some of the common pitfalls.
On March 2, 2021, the members of Women in ITE and STEM committees hosted engaging webinar will introduce middle school and high school students to the exciting and meaningful engineering careers in the transportation field. This ITE panel of women engineers shared their career paths, talked about their most exciting projects, described how their work impacts their communities, and answered questions from the audience. Click here to access the recording of this terrific session.
Several members of the ITE STEM Committee created short videos sharing their perspectives on how they chose to become a transportation professional, how she impacts her community through her job, and the favorite part of her job. They also provide advice to kids considering a career in transportation.
Access the YouTube playlist or click on individual videos below:
Learn more about the Future City Competition Program: https://futurecity.org
Learn how you can get involved with the Future City Competition program in your region: https://futurecity.org/regions
Future City 2024 Transportation Award Winner
City Name: Philadelphia, PA
School Name: Lionville Middle School
Future City 2020 Transportation Award Winner
City Name: Salt Lake City
Team Members: Allison Rice, Nicolas Yendrzeski, Marley Polosky
Educator: Janell Hudson
Mentor: Robyn Rice
School: Maricopa Wells Middle School
Future City Region: Arizona
Future City 2018 Transportation Award Winner
The 2019 K–12 STEM competition, designed to promote, encourage, and celebrate STEM-related activities among ITE members. The 2019 competition had a fantastic turnout with 13 entries total. This year, two categories were offered—one for small projects, and one for large.
The Georgia ITE Section/GA Chapter of the Southern District took home the prize in the Large Category for its project, “GA ITE STEM Day 2019.” On STEM Day, members from across the Georgia Section visited local schools to teach students about the transportation profession and helped promote our industry to the next generation.
The National Capital Section/Carleton University Chapter within the Canadian District was the winner of the Small Category for its project, “Intro to Transportation Engineering.” During the event, participants ages 11-14 got the chance to work with real transportation engineers and engineering students to solve hypothetical transportation problems set in their community.
Both winners will receive $250 to use toward future STEM related projects and activities in their area. Stay tuned for a full overview of the award winning projects, photos, and a competition overview in the February ITE Journal.
Have you been asked to share what you do with younger students? The activities and presentations below are specific to introducing K-12 kids to what ITE does – transportation!