As we approach the birthday of Thomas Edison, February 11th, our thoughts turn toward the many teachers we have interacted with over the years, those who bring the Edison message and spirit to their students. Teachers are always communicating with us, asking questions, visiting the legendary West Orange labs, prowling our websites, encouraging student teams to take part in our annual Thomas Edison Invention Challenge, and developing lesson plans around the technological accomplishments of the world’s greatest inventor.
These teachers understand how to combine content and process in the curriculum, who have a magnificent comprehension of the importance of empowering their students to invent and dream of new things, just like the great inventor. In these heady days of STEM-style teaching in the classroom, and its importance to competing in a global economy, we celebrate the integration of science, technology, engineering and math. One cannot help but recognize that Thomas Edison, through his invention factory concept and the project management of perhaps 30-40 teams of inventors and craftspeople every day, pioneered the very taproots of STEM over 125 years ago.
Edison realized the value of education and often spoke out about the need to get the young ones to think and engage their creativity. One of the first uses he thought his invention of motion pictures would fulfill was for education in the classroom. Wow … sounds like a precursor to our online learning via the Internet! Here is something we always tell teachers about – Edison’s business philosophy:
- Think out of the box
- Be entrepreneurial-take risks
- Fail your way to success
- Success demands that you improve your products
We would like to recognize the special accomplishments of these Edison cheerleaders, those teachers who personify the Edison spirit and give their students an invaluable lifetime lesson. Take a moment and drop us a note about a teacher you know or work with who gives their students this kind of inspiration. You can send this to firstname.lastname@example.org. Maybe a simple email about this teacher and why you think they deserve to be recognized. We will do the rest.
Here are the cash prizes for the classroom:
- First Place – $500
- Second Place – $250
- Third Place – $150