Design-Build-Inspire! Workshops


A one-day workshop led by Iridescent that brings together engineers, scientists, teachers and parents todevelop a multi-session hands-on family science course for children and parents.

At the workshop, Iridescent provides a model for translating research into a stimulating and engaging hands-on activity for children. Additional support is provided through online resources that help engineers create effective lesson plans and engineering design projects.


Engineers and scientists interested in developing AND teaching open-ended engineering design projects to children

Local school sends teachers and parents interested in learning and leading the Family Science Courses


Each stakeholder develops valuable skills and benefits from the overall program.

Engineers and scientists – serve their community, find a sense of meaning and inspire the next generation of engineers and scientists while learning to communicate complex ideas to the public through hands-on projects

Teachers – learn how to incorporate open-ended engineering projects in their classroom and how to use the web and mobile application to support science inquiry for their students.

Parentslearn to help engage their child in science exploration at home and how to help their children become active creators and builders. They also learn how to lead the Family Science Courses in their own schools so that the support for their children is sustainable and long-term.

Children – learn to be curious, courageous and persistent.  The sessions focus on science inquiry, building, creating and inventing. Lower order learning gains include familiarity with tools, a variety of physical materials and investigative instruments.



There are three main stages for this program:

  1. The one-day Design-Build-Inspire! workshop
  2. Online training and support (complete and refine lessons and Family Science Course logistics). This takes place over a month following the workshop.
  3. Implementing and teaching the Family Science Courses (once a week in the evening at a school for 3-5 weeks)

At the Design-Build-Inspire! workshop

  • Engineers, scientists, teachers and parents meet each other, form teams and set dates for the Family Science Courses
  • Each team works to identify an overarching story and 3-5 open ended engineering design projects.
  • Parents learn about implementing a Family Science Course in their school.

Workshop Schedule (Tentative)

9:00 – 9:30 am Check-in and Meet and Greet
9:30 – 10:00 am Introduction to Iridescent, The Tech and school partners
10:00 – 11:00 am What makes a good engineering design challenge?
Build a sample activity
11:00 – 11:30 am Discussion: Evaluate and critique of  sample activity
11:30 – 12:30 pm
12:30 – 1:30pm
Create Your Own Content and Challenge – teams will create their own content
1:30 – 2:30pm Family Science Course Planning – Teams will outline the multi-week course content and assign members to teach each week
2:30 – 3:30 pm Elements of a Good Presentation and Classroom Management
3:30 – 4:00 pm Wrap Up and Next Steps