Project 366 heads to the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Triangle’s headquarters for the Multiplying Family art class to learn about engineering and mathematics. In the largest participation outcome yet, the participants learned about engineering from visiting professional Aaron, a mechanical engineer with his Professional Engineer license. Aaron started his education at a local community college, and completed his four-year degree in mechanical engineering, which demonstrated the practicality of technical colleges to the young pupils. As his hobby, Aaron works with race cars, allowing him to incorporate engineering into his creative outlet. Aaron’s story made a big impact on the students, and one pupil exclaimed “my favorite part is race cars...I can’t wait to become a mechanical engineer!”
For the art craft, the pupils were given blank pieces of paper and asked to draw what family means to them. By including a value within the craft, the students are able to creatively talk about the importance of values and discuss why family is important to them in a creative, fun way. After engineering their drawings, the students, mentors, and parents divided into three groups to create custom tessellation designs with their family pictures in the center. After working in separate groups, all of the participants were asked to come together and create an entire tessellation design. This project allowed pupils to connect their engineering sketches with mathematics in tessellation paper patterns while sharing their value of family.
The tessellation activity helped students put together the family engineered sketches with mathematics and art, as the project required them to creatively come up with designs to fit together. Tessellation uses patterns and geometric shapes to fit together perfectly, which demonstrates the beauty being created when mathematics and art come together. These pupils used their own creative thinking to portray the importance of their family while engaging in a stimulating art activity, and they took away a wonderful message, which can be summed up by one pupil who says “My family picture has a sun and a moon because the sun goes up and the moon goes down. Families go through the good times (ups) and bad (downs) together.”
The House for Proteges