When I was teaching middle school science, one of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), included understanding the engineering and design process. I decided to create a bulletin board display that would serve as a reference for my students during one of our STEM lessons.
My students were designing, constructing, and testing a thermos to determine which structure could hold the most heat. Throughout this lesson, I referenced this bulletin board. Having a visual of the 5 steps of the engineering design process (Ask, Imagine, Plan, Create, Improve) that can be referred to, helped solidify the process for my students.
We also covered the Who, What, Why, and How of the engineering design process.
I highlighted these topics on the bulletin board to reference that engineers use the design process when creating functional processes and products. The design process is a methodical series of steps that an engineer uses, and the process should serve as a guide. Therefore, as my students designed and created their own thermos to hold heat, it was important that they followed the 5 step process. One important step that I made sure we had time for was an improvement. Engineers repeat the process as many times as needed to improve their product or process.
I created this bulletin board using only a black and white printer. Yep! No colored ink needed. I printed the headers on alternating colored paper. I used a different colored sheet of paper for each step of the design process. And then I just printed the anchor chart sheets on white paper. I added a touch of color to each paper by taking a strip of scrap paper from the circles I cut out, and glued it onto the edge of the paper. Simple, but easy way to add a pop of color.
If you want to recreate this bulletin board kit for your own classroom, you can find the easy to print kit here. Even if you don't have time to create a full display, the 5 step design process cycle can be a great reference for your students.