Teachers are the direct link in molding students into potentially future engineers
By Celine Singh, Queens University Student, April 23, 2019
My name is Celine Singh, and I am currently enrolled in the Bachelor of Education program at Queens University. Presently, I am completing a 90-hour alternative placement at Hatch (the design contractor working with the City for the Third Crossing). This placement gives me the opportunity to expand my learning outside of a typical classroom environment and to perhaps connect some of the teaching material to the basic concepts of engineering. Through my day-to-day interactions with engineers, I am constantly learning about the role of engineers, the work they do, and the projects they are currently working on. Moreover, I am also making the connections of how their work relates to what teachers are required to teach in the curriculum.
Connection between Engineers and Teachers
Where science becomes real life
By Celine Singh, Queens University Student, April 24, 2019
My role at Hatch is a bit more unusual compared to any other co-op student. Given the fact that I am coming into this placement with a teaching background, my role is discover connections between engineering and subjects taught in elementary school. During my time at Hatch I have been provided with the opportunity to learn more about the work that the team is working on in Kingston for the Third Crossing Bridge. While working, and interacting with the engineers I have learned and understood the process involved when building a bridge. For example, I've learned that engineers need to consider the environment, species at risk, habitats and community involvement before designing a bridge. This is important for teachers to know about because most of the concepts taught are linked to the science curriculum. To demonstrate these key concepts of engineering from a teaching perspective I have created sample lesson plans. These lesson plans integrates certain topics of what engineers consider when working on a project to the specific expectations in the curriculum.
Connections to the Ontario Curriculum:
- Science (structures, environment)
- Social Studies (community)
- Literacy (written & oral)
In my opinion it is crucial for teachers to make these connections to engineering when teaching certain topics. These connections can help students to make a clear distinction between the work they are doing and real life scenarios. In addition, I have also learned about the importance of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) in both engineering and as a teacher. For engineers they incorporate STEM in the everyday work they do. Likewise, teachers can also instill this in students at a young age by providing them with the opportunity to demonstrate their work in a variety of STEM related activities. Teachers are the direct link in molding students into potentially future engineers.
Connection to the Environment
- As an educator it is your responsibility to teach students about the natural environment and most specifically how the plants, animals and species change and adapt according to the environment.
- Making the connection to real life scenarios can be very much applicable and easier for students to connect their learning to outside a classroom.
- Likewise, engineers do a lot of work related to the environment when designing, building and constructing certain things. For example, before an engineer moves forward, they have to first discuss how it would affect the environment before they proceed with their work.
- Overall Expectation: Students should be able to connect their learning on the following topics using an inquiry-based approach as to how it relates to engineering.
Connection of Engineering, Environment and the Curriculum
Connection to the following topics in the Ontario Science Curriculum:
- Understanding Life Systems
- Grade 1: Needs and Characteristics of Living Things
- Understanding Structures and mechanism
- Grade 2: Growth and Changes of animals
- Grade 5: Forces acting on structures and mechanism
- Grade 3: Strong and Stable Structures
- Understanding Life Systems
- Grade 4: Habitats & Communities
At Hatch most of the engineers conduct work that falls under these topics, which can be related to the Ontario Science Curriculum. The following pages would include sample lesson plan topics on these areas showing the connection of how it relates to engineering.
My Placement at the Third Crossing with the City of Kingston has been a special educational experience. For a student in Advertising and Marketing Communications, there is a lot to take away from working with a municipal public engagement team.
By Daniel Taylor, St. Lawrence College student, March 18, 2019
My last four days with the City of Kingston are coming up, and it is time for me to reflect upon my experience as a placement student here at the City of Kingston. When searching for a placement, I had many options: Event marketing companies, radio stations, digital marketing positions, advertising agencies – However, I had done a great deal of work in these scenarios before, and I decided to expand my horizons. Working with the communications officers on the Third Crossing project has given me some valuable takeaways that I can apply to my future career.
The main difference between working with the city of Kingston and all of my other public relations/marketing opportunities is that there is more at stake for the community. Every time the City of Kingston works on a project, they must pay close attention to the needs of the public so that they can benefit the entire community to the best of their ability. For the public engagement team, this means hosting near-neighbour meetings, analyzing data from studies and surveys, and keeping track of interactions with the public over social media and email. These mediums of communication offer the public a chance to voice their opinion on important projects such as the Third Crossing. To see what a near-neighbour meeting looks like, check out this video that I took from the Third Crossing East-side near-neighbour meeting.
At the City of Kingston, I have been able to work with some of the hardest-working, most talented people I know. In my program at St. Lawrence College, one of my courses is Video Strategies, a fantastic course teaching us the basics in video shooting and editing. I have been able to advance my skills with the help of communications officer Paul Whittingham, an expert in graphic design, animation, and video production. My meetings with Paul have been very productive, as he has critiqued my infographics and guided me through improving my videos. I was able to capture B-roll for Paul while he was shooting an "Inside our City" video about the Third Crossing. You can find the video here.
I have gained so much knowledge about the processes and inner-workings of municipal work through this placement. The most important takeaway for me was learning that you should always be doing research on the project you are working on. For me, that meant asking questions about the Third Crossing project, understanding construction schedules and procedures, and reading about other bridge projects and how they have gone about engaging with the public.
I'd like to say thank you to my placement supervisors Holly Wilson (Manager of Intergovernmental Affairs) and Marie Bartlett (Communications Officer) as well as Holly Saunders (Executive Assistant) for their guidance which made this a great experience for me. I've also learned a lot about this project from the presentations of Mark Van Buren (Deputy Commissioner, Transportation and Infrastructure Services, Engineering) and Mark Armstrong (Environmental Lead, Hatch). I look forward to following this project, and I encourage you to do the same by joining the newsletter.
My placement at Kingston's Third Crossing
By Daniel Taylor, St. Lawrence College student, March 18, 2019
My name is Dan Taylor, and I'm a student at St. Lawrence College in the Advertising and Marketing Communications program. I have lived in Kingston for my whole life, and consider myself a proud Kingstonian.
Last autumn, with pressure to find a placement for this semester, I researched projects in Kingston hoping to find something exciting and impactful. It was then that I came across an opportunity to be a co-op student at the Third Crossing, a massive bridge construction project in Kingston that has been approved by City Council and will begin construction in summer 2019. And so, since February, I have been working with the team that is making this project happen.
I'm lucky enough to be a member of the Third Crossing team during my placement, as this project will have a great effect on my hometown
- Providing an alternative eastern route
- Providing vehicular alternatives
I can vividly recall trips to the Royal Military College's Constantine arena for house league hockey games throughout my childhood. My family's biggest frustration with these games was that, many times, getting through the backed-up traffic during rush-hour took almost as long as driving from the west end of Kingston to downtown did. According to this article by Bill Hutchins, The Lasalle Causeway will reach its capacity for traffic by the end of the 2010's.
The Third Crossing is going to allow for cyclists and walkers to access the bridge. This is fantastic news to me, as it will provide Kingstonians and me with more environmentally-conscious ways of utilizing the bridge. This addition to the bridge will coincide with the City's general plans to make roads more cyclist-friendly.
Thanks to the $180,000,000 3-way funding from the City, the Government of Ontario, and the Government of Canada, we will finally get to see this idea come to life. I look forward to hearing and reporting more about the progress of this groundbreaking project. To hear the opinion of more supporters, check out this article about the Kingston East Business Association's beliefs.