Education Technology

Hands-on STEM activities in honor of Jack Kilby

Posted 09/13/2016 by Texas Instruments

In 1958, technology as we knew it changed forever. On Sept. 12, 1958, Jack Kilby, a TI engineer and innovator, invented the integrated circuit. This “building block” of modern electronics transformed the face of technology, affecting nearly every aspect of our lives.

While we can’t know for sure what next great invention will make history like the integrated circuit, what we do know is the students in your classrooms are the future scientists, engineers and mathematicians that will envision and create the solutions to our world’s greatest problems.

In celebration of the 58th anniversary of Jack Kilby’s integrated circuit, we invite you and your students to join us on Jack Kilby Day, Sept. 12, 2016, in envisioning what’s next through four hands-on STEM activities that can be easily integrated into your grade 6-10 science and math courses:


Below are directions for how to walk through each of the four STEM activities and links to where you can download further materials. We hope you and your students have fun envisioning what’s next.

S in STEM: The science of zombies


In this activity, students make a zombie brain to test a hypothesis for counter-attacking the zombie contagion. Download the lesson here.

Ever wondered what you would do in a zombie apocalypse? Most of us would grab our family and survival kits and run to safety. However, would any of us think about using science to create a vaccine to stop the infection?

In this STEM Behind Hollywood science activity, students will investigate chemistry and life sciences principles, observe processes such as titration, and engage in designing experiments, predicting outcomes and testing their hypotheses. Grab your TI-Nspire™ CX handheld and download the files for your students.

Want to look like this guy? Download a printable zombie mask to start your own zombie apocalypse.

T in STEM: The invention of the integrated circuit technology

How does technology make a difference in our world today? What if we asked you to go a day without your phone, a week without lights, a month without a car or public transportation? All of these systems require technology that has evolved over time to bring convenience, safety, functionality and efficiency to our lives. Learn about a technology key to modern electronics and the inventor who brought it to life.

Step 1: Start by watching this video:

jack-kilby-video

Step 2: Download and make copies of the activity, “Engineering the Integrated Circuit.” Read through the document with your students. They will be asked to imagine life without the integrated circuit and how they, too, can change the world.

Step 3: Learn how engineers today use the integrated circuit in their day-to-day job. Download these slides to show your classroom how engineers use the integrated circuit today.

E in STEM: Learning to code like engineers

Engineers get to solve problems every day. One of the fundamental ways to learn engineering principles is through coding and programming – a problem-solving skill many engineers continue to use throughout their careers.

Learn how to code in 10 minutes on a TI-84 Plus CE graphing calculator or TI-Nspire™ CX handheld and read about how many TI engineers taught themselves to code using TI technology.

M in STEM: Using math to win every day

Math is an important part of life and can help you “win” in every day scenarios. Hoping to save up for that new car? Wanting to double that perfect recipe to share? Going for the winning goal in the big game? Math helps you win in all of these areas and more.

Download and print copies of the probability game and let your students experience how they can win with math through a hands-on game.

Thanks for participating! We’d love to hear what your students learned and what they envision is next. Join the conversaTIon by using the hashtag #JackKilbyDay on social media and follow TI Calculators on Twitter,InstagramFacebook and LinkedIn.

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