Mobile’s Flight Works Alabama on Thursday unveiled a set of classroom kits and techniques that it hopes classrooms around the country will use to encourage the development of innovation and inventions.
We Build It Better innovation kits “will introduce new and inventive technologies, expose students to techniques that help build new skill sets, provide hours of curriculum and activities, offer unique resources and promote career awareness,” according to Flight Works.
Beginning in January 2021, middle-school teachers will be provided with the first three of seven innovation kits as part of a pilot program. The seven-module program will be piloted in its entirety during spring 2021.
“This exemplifies Flight Works Alabama’s commitment to innovation within science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM) education,” said Chairman and CEO of Airbus Americas Jeff Knittel. “Through this program, middle school students will be introduced to a stimulating curriculum, providing them with invaluable workforce skills they otherwise might not receive. We are proud to partner with Flight Works Alabama on this cutting-edge and exciting initiative.”
In addition to Airbus, the State of Alabama, Alabama Power Foundation, Amazon Web Services, Snap-on Inc., Mott MacDonald, University of West Alabama and University of South Alabama are partnering with Flight Works on the We Build It Better program.
Flight Works, a nonprofit aerospace exhibit and education center devoted to providing people of all ages the opportunity to develop work skills and soft skills, says We Build It Better delivers on that goal.
“Creative processes and logic play a crucial role in the development of innovations and inventions,” Flight Works said in a prepared release. “Middle school students often do not have exposure or experience with developing effective creative processes. The overall objective of this program is to weave 21st century work skills with higher level thinking skills such as measurement, product design, tools, electrical wiring, fiber optics and coding to encourage students to design inventions on their own.”
Gov. Kay Ivey said the new program will bring “crucial integration of hands-on training, practical skill acquisition and workforce development to Alabama’s middle schoolers in a unique way.”
“The program directly aligns with Flight Works Alabama’s mission to inspire, equip and reinforce Alabama’s future workforce through innovative educational offerings, like this one, to which the state is proud to support,” Ivey added.