According to The United States Department of Labor, the number of jobs for the electrical engineering field available in 2012 were close to 306,100. However, to fill all of the positions, there were only 166,100 electrical engineers. According to the ManpowerGroup, the gap between skilled trade jobs and other jobs will become more acute.
With all this in mind we have decided to create a board-game targeted at grade school kids. We are looking at grade school kids who are just getting into science. At this age kids are just starting to understand the world better and are more impressionable. The purpose and our intention, with this game, is to get them interested in electrical engineering and hopefully pursue it as a career. Being that this is a board-game, our deliverables will be the game itself, a manual to go along with the game, a set of rules for the game, and a set of question cards(some of which will be blank for the teacher to fill in). We see the game being introduced to the kids in classrooms when they first get into electricity in their science classes. They will have to answer questions based on the current lesson (whether they be the ones provided by the teacher or ones the teacher makes up, does not matter), and for each question they get right they will get to complete a circuit. The goal of the game will be to complete a circuit three times to win. Each time the circuit is completed a light will shine indicating that they completed it. All of the circuitry will be set inside the board and the teacher will be present at all times, so there should be no safety concerns. With this hands on approach using electricity and engineering they get to see how they can work something that looks so technical. The game we are making is not designed to be something with high replayability, but something to grab their attention and get them interest in electronics and electrical engineering.
Throughout the semester we will need to do a few things. Firstly, some in-depth research on when kids start learning science, particularity electrical science. Then, we will find exactly what age group we are working with(though we want to aim for grade school kids). This is very important because currently we only have an idea and it will change how the game is designed, taking into account their limitations and knowledge. This will show us exactly how intricate the game needs to be made. After we know all this, we will need to research materials for the board-game. Then it’s just a matter of putting it all together.
We will complete the project in steps. First, all the research and information will get gathered together. This will include online research, but also speaking to teachers to see how we can cater to their needs. We will work on all that together and we have a GoogleDrive set up where we are all putting the research that we find. We will communicate over Skype, but also meet in person when we need to put the board together for the game. Once the research is sufficient enough, we will gather all the materials and proceed to design the board. After the design we have to actually build it. Then it’s just a matter of testing the game and finalizing everything.
At the end of all this we will learn more about electrical engineering. We will also have a better understand of the school system and maybe figure out why there is a lack of electricians and electrical engineers. More importantly we hope to get kids more interested in electrical engineering because that will benefit everyone in the long run.