TECH is a hands-on, six-week, summer enrichment program for experientially disadvantaged high school rising juniors and seniors that incorporates the internal combustion engine and go-carts as the centerpiece for inquiry-based interdiscipline studies in language arts, life science, chemistry, physics, mathematics, social sciences and humanities. The academic concepts encountered are based on natural interests and applied experiences.
The TECH program provides an environment that naturally stimulates student interest at a developmentally appropriate level to foster self-discovery and learning. Using the internal combustion engine, go-carts and the automobile as vehicles to develop the appropriate and stimulating learning environment, students are led to assume job responsibilities, develop cooperative learning groups, develop social responsibility skills, establish techniques for problem-solving, practice and hone reporting and communication skills, and set and follow through on academic goals.
The educated person is one that practices self-education either in a formal or informal sense and every student should be provided an environment that naturally stimulates interest to discover and learn for themselves and through self-motivation to acquire these skills, practice them and become proficient in their use for personal growth and professional development.
It is the mission of the Teaching Enquiry Concepts via Heuristics program to encourage students to learn to discover knowledge and performance skills for themselves and that these methods will serve as the vehicle for problem-solving and life long learning. TECH engineers a learning environment that promotes the awakening and guiding of natural curiosity and cognitive processes to foster a pragmatic understanding of the physical world, self-discovery and learning.
The major goals of the TECH program are to:
- Engineer a natural enquiry environment that stimulates student interest in science, mathematics, and technology;
- Provide the opportunity for students to develop a focused and disciplined mind;
- Promote the effectiveness of goal formation and usefulness of defining and establishing priorities;
- Model the interdisciplinary nature of learning;
- Establish the importance of acquiring essential mental and manipulative tools for problem-solving;
- Encourage use of collaborative team efforts in learning, discovery and problem-solving;
- Foster coping with and accepting delayed gratification as part of personal and professional development;
- Enhance oral and written communication skills;
- Develop socially and academically appropriate critique and argumentative skills; and
- Foster the use of appropriate protocols and effective experimental designs.