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  :: info for instructors ::

Tell me, and I will forget.
Show me, and I may remember.
Involve me, and I will understand.
- Confucius
Circa 450 BC

::: DiscoverHover: a teaching and learning adventure

Keeping students engaged in the learning process is possibly a teacher's greatest challenge. Putting information out to your students is no guarantee that it will be taken in. In the traditional approach to teaching, some class time is spent with the instructor lecturing while students passively watch and listen, then work individually on assignments.

Such teacher-centered instructional methods have repeatedly been found less effective than instruction that involves active learning, collaborative learning and project based learning.

A large and growing body of research confirms that student-centered cooperative learning projects, such as DiscoverHover, produce students who exhibit greater retention and deeper understanding of learned material; higher academic achievement; better high-level reasoning and critical thinking skills; greater intrinsic motivation to learn and achieve; more on-task and less disruptive behavior in class; more positive relationships with peers; higher self-esteem; and more positive relations among differing ethnic groups.

::: Benefits to Students

Hundreds of schools and universities have found that building a hovercraft is a hands-on, active team-learning project that is singularly effective in motivating students. DiscoverHover gives you a unique way to teach standard curricula, year after year, while keeping your students excited about learning and deeply immersed in their own education. In addition, DiscoverHover will help your students develop:

• Communication, leadership and conflict-management skills
• Self-confidence and a self-directed desire to learn
• Good judgment, critical thinking and decision-making skills
• Practical skills to bridge the gap between classroom and industry
• Teambuilding and peer coaching abilities
• Better dexterity

As other instructors comment, DiscoverHover is fun to teach; you won't have to work hard to keep your students motivated. In addition to the enthusiasm naturally created by the adventure of building a hovercraft and learning to fly it, your students will be captivated by the opportunity to compete in established national and international hovercraft races.

::: Benefits to Schools and Teachers

DiscoverHover is a unique multidisciplinary endeavor that does more than generate interest in engineering and technology, and involves more than just a school's technology department. In schools that have undertaken hovercraft projects, other teachers saw the project as an activity that would enhance their own curriculum. Life Science classes sewed hovercraft skirts; the school newspaper tracked progress; marketing and journalism classes promoted the hovercraft's appearances, sent out press releases and wrote articles; audiovisual students documented the project on video and drafting classes modified the blueprints.

DiscoverHover fosters cooperation not only between various departments in the same school, but also between individual schools. In many cases, it leads to rival schools working cooperatively for each other's benefit.

Besides promoting study in practical applications of engineering and scientific principles, DiscoverHover helps teach:

• Aerodynamics
• Audio-Visual
• Blueprint reading
• Composite construction with plastics
• Design and construction
• Electronics/Electrical wiring
• Engineering drawing
• Fan design and building
• Fundraising
• Manufacturing
• Marketing and public relations
• Mathematics
• Mechanics/tools and machinery
• Metalworking
• Painting
• Photography/Video
• Physics
• Report writing
• Small engines
• Sewing and working with fabrics
• Transmissions
• Transportation
• Woodworking

In addition, DiscoverHover is a tremendously successful public relations program, a novel undertaking that will easily bring positive public attention to your school, its faculty and its students. For examples of past publicity, see the DiscoverHover News Center.

Publicizing your DiscoverHover project

As you begin the DiscoverHover project at your school, we encourage you to document your progress in writing and photographs. There are many opportunities to have your school's project featured on the DiscoverHover web site and in HoverWorld Insider, the World Hovercraft Organization's newsletter.

All you need to do is submit your materials to PR@WorldHovercraft.org.

::: Compliance with Academic Standards

The DiscoverHover program focuses on developing an inquiry-based science program for teachers, which will guide and facilitate learning among students with a particular emphasis on understanding the connections between science and technology.

The program is designed to comply with state and national education standards. DiscoverHover will satisfy, in part, science teaching and content standards as outlined in the National Science Education Standards listed at http://www.nap.edu/readingroom/books/nses/html/. DiscoverHover provides curriculum materials – free hovercraft plans, free lesson plans, supporting materials and educational resources – that adhere to these standards and were developed with the assistance of educators across the United States and Canada.

::: To register for DiscoverHover, click here.

All Material © 2003-2004 World Hovercraft Organization