We Can Change The World Challenge

Hello my fellow geekybirders – does that make multiple readers a geeky flock?

This is coming to you hot off the presses!

The Siemens Foundation, Discovery Communications and the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) have joined together to inspire student achievement in sustainability through a comprehensive education initiative, the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge. Announced today, the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge is an unprecedented partnership between three industry leading organizations that are committed to educating, empowering and engaging students, teachers and communities in environmental sustainability.

Kicking off the 2008 school year in September, the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge is the first and only national K-12 sustainability education initiative aligned to state education standards and uniquely tailored to match students’ growing comprehension abilities throughout their school-aged years. By partnering with Discovery Education, a division of Discovery Communications, which provides scientifically proven, standards-based digital media tools and resources to classrooms nationwide, and the NSTA, the largest science teacher organization in the world dedicated to improving science education and increasing student learning by engaging all teachers of science, the Siemens Foundation will serve as a pioneer in recognizing sustainability efforts within the K-12 education system.

“As a leader in environmentally relevant businesses, Siemens knows the answers to tomorrow’s critical environmental questions are in the minds of today’s students,” said James Whaley, President, Siemens Foundation. “Uniting with Discovery Education and NSTA complements Siemens’ commitment to the future and to those who are going to create it. We look forward to unleashing this tremendous reservoir of potential through the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge.”

“Education and the environment have always been part of Discovery’s core mission and we are proud to be a partner in encouraging students to learn about and create sustainable solutions through the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge,” said David Zaslav, President and CEO, Discovery Communications.

“The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge will engage science teachers and allow students the opportunity to think like scientists, learn more about key environmental issues, and to develop critical-thinking skills that will help them to make informed decisions regarding stewardship of the planet,” said Dr. Gerry Wheeler, Executive Director, NSTA.

Designed to equip students in every grade level with the tools and inspiration to develop innovative green solutions for schools, homes and communities, the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge will transform participants into active citizens for a greener tomorrow. The program begins by helping young students understand the basic concepts of sustainability and why it’s important to protect the environment. At each subsequent stage, the concepts expand to engage students beyond their classrooms, into their communities and to the global world.

K-2: My Classroom: Introduce students to the importance of “being green” and provide opportunities for active learning and engagement.

3-5: My School: Inspire students to think beyond their classroom — using science and math skills to take their school “green.”

6-8: My Community: Empower students with tools to apply the Scientific Method to real-world “green issues” in their local communities.

9-12: My World: Connect students with real-world scientists as they tackle today’s “green challenges” — moving from insight to global action.

In September, the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge launches with a national middle school competition where teams of students will identify an environmental problem in their community and will research and recommend a reproducible environmental improvement program. Teams will then provide an explanation about how other communities across the country can launch similar environmental improvement programs.

The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge will expand to kindergarten and elementary school students in 2009 and to high school students in 2010, complete with standards-based lesson plans and teacher materials, student projects and prizing to foster learning, team work and problem solving around sustainability.

For more information about the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge, visit http://www.wecanchangetheworldchallenge.com.

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