Teacher Area

Lesson Plan 1: Introduction

Students build a foundation of knowledge related to engineering while gaining knowledge about the role of systems engineers in developing solutions to complex problems. Students will be engaged in a wide range of systems and global engineering activities as they collaborate on a humanitarian-based design challenge.


Students will be able to:
  1. Identify examples of engineering projects that would benefit from a systems engineering approach.
  2. Describe the meaning of the term appropriate technology and give examples of its use.
Materials and Resources


New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards

  • Standard 5.2: Science and Society
  • Standard 5.4: Nature and Process of Technology
  • Standard 8.2: Technological Literacy

ITEA Standards for Technological Literacy

  • Standards: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 17

National Science Content Standards

  • Unifying Concepts and Processes in Science
  • Science as Inquiry
  • Physical Science
  • Science and TechnologyScience in Personal and Social Perspectives
  1. Discuss the SaGE project and the design brief. Explain how a systems engineering approach can be used to develop solutions to the problem.
  2. Use the Appropriate Technology PowerPoint and Activity Sheet to help students learn how the principles of appropriate technolgy can be be applied within this activity
  3. Assign students to three project-wide teams: Design Team, Prototype Team and Manufacturing Team. Students will maintain these teams for the duration of the project. Optional: Within each team, students canbe assigned specific roles (see example). Collaboration among participating schools will be on a team basis. For example, the Design Team from all participating schools will collaborate on the design of the home lighting system.
  4. Have students write a class letter of introduction and share with other participating schools by posting to Collaboration Central.


Explain to students how their participation in the project will be evaluated. You may want to have students keep a daily log that you review periodically. Refer to the Sample Assessment Rubric for suggestions on assessing individual and group performance.