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Primary Schools

About STEPS Engineers Week 

STEPS Engineers Week 2022 takes place from Saturday 5 - Friday 11 March. During STEPS Engineers Week-themed lessons are taught in primary and secondary school classrooms across the country to help children discover the exciting world of engineering in Ireland. Teachers and schools can access free engineering resources provided by the STEPS team, or create their own engineering themed activities.

STEPS is here to support you in planning your primary school Engineers Week activity. This page contains all the information that you need to get involved with STEPS Engineers Week 2022.

How does STEPS support my STEPS Engineers Week Activities?

How teachers can support STEPS:

  • Carry out an engineering themed activity with your students during STEPS Engineers Week.
  • Share photos, videos and updates of your plans, your engineering activities in progress, and photos and highlights of your activities. 
  • If you are carrying out an activity that IS NOT LISTED ON THE STEPS WEBSITE, please Register your activity on our official STEPS Engineers Week 2022 Custom Teacher Activity Page. If you are downloading and carrying an activity from the STEPS website, watching an online STEPS Engineers Week Engineering Show, or accessing resources behind the registration page please do not use this form – STEPS has tracked your involvement via other methods.
  • Encourage evaluation and improvement of the week using the STEPS Engineers Week surveys, and providing feedback on your experience as a teacher. Surveys will be available closer to STEPS Engineers Week.

Plan your activity

STEPS Engineers Week activities should show off what engineering is to young people. This is the only requirement from STEPS – otherwise the sky is the limit!

Do you need any activity idea? STEPS has collated a list of activities suitable for primary school audiences that you might like to carry out. These can be found below.

If you have another engineering activity in mind, that’s great! Please do feel free to go ahead with your own activity. You can carry out the same activity each year, you are under no obligation from STEPS to come up with something new each year.

Here is a selection of suggested activities and resources that the STEPS team have gathered for primary school level.

About Engineering, for Primary Teachers

Primary teachers, learn about engineering and how to communicate about it with your students.

Access STEPS Activities and Resources

STEPS has over 20 free primary level engineering activities available for teachers to download and carry out in classrooms. 

How to access free STEPS Engineers Week resources:

  1. Click on the title of each resource to drop down the accordion below and learn more about the resource you would like to access.
  2. Complete this short registration form. You will then be able to access all free STEPS Engineers Week activities and resources.

There are still more new STEPS Engineers Week resources to come in the lead up to March. Please subscribe to our mailing list to hear when these go live.

As Creatives Engineering Everywhere: Engineering Quizzes

This resource consist of PowerPoint quizzes exploring engineering, with a short introductory film, for three different age groups. 

Do you have what it takes to get top marks in the STEPS Engineers Quiz? As Creatives has created family-friendly quizzes to explore engineering at home and challenge each other to see who the ultimate engineer is! Watch the intro short film to learn more about engineering all around you.

Suitable for age 8-12

Engineering Activity Bumper Pack

This bumper pack contains 15 hands on activities for you to get involved this STEPS Engineers Week. You can carry out one or as many activities you like! Print and copy the activity page of your choice.

Contents:

  • APPLE MUMMY
  • ARTIFICIAL LIMB
  • Blasting Balloons
  • Mentos and Diet Coke
  • peel a raw egg
  • potato arch
  • String Telephone
  • Tower Crane
  • CD Hovercraft
  • Detecting air pollution
  • BLOWING OUT CANDLES
  • EGG DROP CHALLENGE
  • ENGINEER A PLANE
  • BENDING WATER
  • ENGINEERING COLOURING SHEETS X 5

Engineering Colouring Sheets

Explore engineering in these five engineering themed colouring sheets.

Engineering in our lives: Video and Workbook

The Engineering in our Lives short animated video shows you how engineering is all around us! Watch this short video, and complete the accompanying workbook so see how engineering is our lives.

Watch the video now on the Engineers Ireland YouTube channel.

Engineering With Paper

The Engineers Ireland STEPS Team has partnered with Dazzling Discoveries to bring you two Engineering with Paper Activities. Students build a slide, jungle gym, see saw and more in the Engineering With Paper: Build your own Playground pack. Students Build their own paper creature in the Engineering With Paper: Design your own Creatures pack. Add hair, wings, facial features and more.

Mission Unstoppable

Access four exclusive episodes of STEM programme Mission Unstoppable, available to watch for free.

Be inspired by female STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) superstars in leading fields including agricultural tech, entertainment, animals, design, and space - all categories key to the teen experience. New to the show as a correspondent is STEPS Ambassador Fig O’Reilly, a “NASA Datanaut” and Miss Universe Ireland 2019.

Age suitability: 10+

Episode Information:

1. Saving the bees: In this episode, our STEPS Ambassador, Fionnghuala O'Reilly finds out how we can help save the bees. A scientist explains the importance of bees to our crops and food supply. Also in this episode, An agricultural tech is showing how the latest technology is being used to improve agriculture. A researcher dives into the ocean to survey the giant sea bass population off the coast of California. A mechanical engineer teaches you how to make a battery with a lemon.

2. Laser printing cars: Fionnghuala meets with Engineers who are forging a path into the future of 3d printing.  Also, a gemologist takes us through the 4 Cs of diamonds grading: cut, clarity, colour and carat. A chemical engineer shows us how vitamins are made.

 

3. Wildlife biology in Alaska: Fionnghuala finds out how science is used to track animals in the wild. A wildlife biologist tracks animals from shrews to wolverines, deep in the Alaskan forest. A teacher shows us how she inspires the next generation of STEM innovators. An astrophysicist takes us through the totally stellar life cycle of stars.

 

4. Astronaut training in zero gravity: A pilot shows Fionnghuala how real astronauts experience weightlessness in space. A scuba diving expert teaches us how to get scuba-certified. An astrophysicist takes us far, far, away, in her explanation of exoplanet detection. A reliability engineer working at a major oil company explains why safety is always a priority at her job.


Hex Allen's Guide to Defeating Monsters

The Engineers Ireland STEPS team have paired up with Jasmine Florentine, author & project illustrator of Hex Allen and the Clanksmiths, to share Hex Allen's Guide to Defeating Monsters! Join Hex and her friends as they use science and engineering to get out of a bunch of scrapes, and make some fantastic gadgets in this special and exciting activity. 

Jasmine has created a video demonstration especially for STEPS Engineers Week! Watch now on the Engineers Ireland YouTube Channel.

STEM Stories – Film and Documentaries

The STEPS team has selected a list of films and documentaries that will get students excited about engineering and STEM. Used as part of a lesson, movies can spark discussion and reinforce topics.

Teacher preparation before the screening:

  • Select a film/documentary which is most suitable for your class. There are sneak peek movie trailers available below to help you chose the most suitable film/documentary for your students.
  • Familiarise yourself with the discussion guide and post-screening worksheets/resources. These are available here, under each film/documentary.
  • Print out any resources that you need.
  • If you select a film/documentary that requires payment, ensure that you have access to a suitable payment method.

On the day of the screening:

  • Complete a short discussion with your class about engineering.
  • Watch the film/documentary of your choice.
  • Complete the relevant post-screening worksheets/resources.

COMING SOON

STEM Stories – Reading List

The STEPS team has selected a list of books about engineering and STEM. Why not complete a reading from one of these engineering themed books?

STEPS Engineers Week: Activity Booklet

Hello! And welcome to your Engineering Challenge Passport. We are about to embark on a Round-the-world engineering adventure like no other.

On this trip you will face many challenges. For each one you will need to use your inner-engineer to look at the problem facing you and come up with a way to solve it.

STEPS Primary School Challenge: Wind Energy with Pinwheels

The Engineers Ireland STEPS team has created the Wind Energy Challenge Pack, designed for students to explore sustainability in engineering. Primary school students take on the Pinwheel Challenge.

The pack contains an engineering discussion guide and detailed activity instructions. Available free to download, the activities can be carried out with materials found in the classroom or home.

STEPS Engineers Week Primary School Quiz

Take the STEPS Engineers Week Primary School Quiz! Either call out the questions, or display the PowerPoint on Screen.

Use the Quiz Presentation for the Quiz, and the Answers Presentations to score the quiz!

Take the Engineering Challenge: Primary School

Take the Engineering Challenge! Match the engineering descriptions with the images, and learn about different types of engineering. Colour in the matching sheet.

The Sustainable Engineering Challenge – Primary Level

Take the Sustainable Engineering Challenge and match the ways engineers are helping achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 

A Visual Approach to Engineering and Vocabulary Development for Children with Autism, by Muinteoir Valerie

Children with autism are often visual learners, and this resource was created with this in mind. It’s a bright and engaging resource, focusing on repetition of key words associated with engineering, matching games, and activities based on developing vocabulary. 

On Demand Primary School Engineering Shows

STEPS Engineers Week has four primary school engineering shows that teachers can screen for students in classrooms. Streaming Monday, 7 - Friday, 11 March, teachers can book into a screening our pre-recorded fun & educational shows. The shows can be viewed on any device that normally streams videos.

External engineering activities

Click on the title of each resource to drop down the accordion and learn more about the resource.

DPSM: Human Life, Properties and Characteristics of Materials

Access this resource: Human Life, Properties and Characteristics of Materials

Explore and investigate how people move; Understand how materials may be used in construction; Explore the effect of friction on movement through experimenting with toys and objects on various surfaces.

Click the link below for more information.

https://www.sfi.ie/engagement/discover-primary-science-and-maths/engineers-week/

DREAM, INVENT, CREATE: Engineer the World

Dream, Invent, Create is publication to introduce engineering to kids in primary schools. It will help them make a connection between the everyday world and engineering — and excite them about the possibilities. You can purchase digital editions to share with students remotely, either purchasing a single licence or in batches or 10, 20 or 30. Shop now.

A Guide for Teachers: Dream, Invent, Create a Career in Engineering

Available to access now for free is A Guide for Teachers: Dream, Invent, Create a Career in Engineering

Get kids excited about a career in engineering. Fun lessons, guidance and insights about engineering learning and careers, and the support educators need to make it all work for primary school students. Although it does reference , there are lots of discussion guides and worksheets that work as a standalone resource. Download the Teacher Guide and Student Workbook now. 

Irish Water: The Story of Water

The Story of Water - 46 minutes

The documentary focuses on the critical value of our most precious natural resource and explores the ongoing threats to its future. It seeks to educate and inform; with a range of contributions from engineers, scientists and consumers. It explores the development and current state of Ireland’s public water network, with a unique perspective on the ongoing national project to upgrade the country’s drinking water supply and wastewater treatment, and the role we all have to play in conservation.

Visit Irish Water's website to access.                       
Access the YouTube playlist.

Educational Resources

Irish Water has additional resources available that are relevant to the documentary and Water education available on www.water.ie/education, including The Story of Water Activity Booklet, videos, quizzes and worksheets and more. Links to An Taisce and Scoilnet resources are also available. 

Scoilnet Educational Resources

Irish Waters’ educational resources are available on Scoilnet, to help students learn all about water in a fun and engaging way with videos, fun activities, and support material.  Check out the resources at Scoilnet resources.

Microsoft Dream Space and The Garage online Primary School events

Microsoft Dream Space and The Garage - Primary School Sessions
Microsoft Dream Space and The Garage are hosting two free online sessions this STEPS Engineers Week for primary school students on Wednesday, 9 March. Through an immersive, alternative teaching and learning experience, Dream Space at Microsoft Ireland and The Garage will inspire students and teachers to see technology in exciting new ways, helping them to realise the full potential of what they can achieve.

Booking is live now here.

Microsoft Ireland DreamSpace HomeSpace Series: Full Steam Ahead

DreamSpace HomeSpace is an initiative by Microsoft Ireland to help educators, parents and children participate remotely in some of Microsoft Ireland's favourite DreamSpace activities.

With Microsoft Ireland's Full STEAM Ahead episodes, you will hear from inspiring guest speakers, learn lots about science, technology, engineering, art and maths and will also have lots of fun taking on fun maker challenges. 

These challenges will require you think really creatively, problem solve and generate solutions by using materials that you find around your home. We can't wait to see what you create. 

Get started by visiting RTÉ Learn, and access seven fantastic Full STEAM Ahead lessons.

Access Full STEAM Ahead lessons now.

Network Rail Online Game: Connecting the Railway

How would you build a new railway to join the residents of the town to a city?

Your task is to choose the best route through all the obstacles, thinking about how your choice will affect the company, environment and community.

Play the new online game here!

Twinkl Engineers Week Resources

Twinkl have a great range of activities including  individual activities children can do remotely or in the classroom. 

Access resources now.

External engineering activities and resources
There are a number of engineering themed activities from external providers that you can use for STEPS Engineers Week. If you are carrying out one of these activities, register your activity.
STEPS
Promote Your Activity
Now is the time to shout about your STEPS Engineers Week Activity and communicate your success! Share an update of the activity with your network. Write a blog post for your website, create a video, update social media, circulate an internal email - all to showcase your involvement in STEPS Engineers Week.

Make sure to tag us and use our special hashtag #STEPSEngineersWeek and tag us:

  • Twitter @engineerireland

  • Facebook @engineersireland
  • LinkedIn @EngineersIreland

Registered activity organisers will receive a Digital Promotional Pack to help promote your activities. The pack includes:

Posters Text for suggested social media posts
Logos (Various Colours) Email signature
Instagram, Twitter & LinkedIn graphics Logo as Gaeilge

Record your Impact

As an activity organiser it is critical for you and your students to evaluate your STEPS Engineers Week experiences, so we can analyse the positive impact of all your hard work. You can do this via our online evaluation or via a printable evaluation sheet.

STEPS will email to all teachers who have registered to gain access to resources, or have registered their own activities.

STEPS Engineers Week and The Gaelic Players Association Engineer the Game of the Future Competition

The Engineers Ireland STEPS programme has teamed up with The Gaelic Players Association to launch the Engineer the Game of the Future competition that challenges primary and secondary school students to engineer how Gaelic Games will look by 2050. The competition aims to introduce engineering in a fun way and encourages students to develop their problem-solving, creative and communication skills.