STEM | Brief
Disney Expands Environmental Challenge to Middle Schoolers
Disney has opened up its second-annual science event, Planet Challenge, a competition that's designed to engage students in solving environmental challenges.
This year's challenge will be open to middle school students in grades 6 through 8 in addition to elementary students in grades 3 through 5. For the competitions, students choose an environmental topic and then research, investigate, and take action on a local level. Completed projects will be submitted as digital portfolios and scored on the design of the project, environmental impact, assessment/reflection, and final presentation. (Detailed rubrics are available on the Disney Planet Challenge site.)
Prizes will be awarded to individual teachers, classes, and schools. Further information an be found here. Participants at the middle school level will be eligible to compete for a special grand prize, which includes $20,000 for the school and $7,500 for the individual teacher, plus travel expenses to the 2012 National Science Teachers Association Conference in March 2012 and a one-year membership in NSTA. The winning class and school might be featured on the Disney Channel, and individual students will receive a Disney prize pack.
Registration is due Dec. 17, but projects won't need to be submitted until Feb. 16. WInners will be announced in April. Further information on the competitions can be found here.
About the Author
David Nagel is editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Technology Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal and STEAM Universe. A 29-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.
He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at or follow him on Twitter at @THEDavidNagel (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education).