2010-02-12 / Top Stories

FAA Seeks To Incorporate Its Own Brand Of Education

By Nicholas Briano

Representatives from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) were on hand at this week’s Community 14 meeting in Rockaway Beach to present their wide array of educational program for kids ranging from 5th grade through high school.

Diane Crean, Deputy Regional Administrator, called upon the board to spread the word about what the FAA has to offer students of all ages, some of which may not cost the schools any money at all.

“Tell your principals and superintendants about the programs you heard about,” Crean said. “We incorporate math and science into aviation and space that makes learning for the kids a lot of fun.”

One of the FAA’s more popular programs that works in conjunction with NASA is called “Smart Skies,” available for grades 5 to 9.

“Smart Skies” consists of two programs called “Fly By Math” and “Line Up With Math” both of which are free of cost and are web based. Students use distance-rate-time math problems and the challenge of safe separation of two airplanes with the use of pre-algebra and algebra in air traffic control. Included in the programs is everything a teacher would need to execute the program to perfection, Crean said. Teachers are given a list of standards, mat erials, guides, workbooks and videos as well as an air traffic control simulator.

Crean says math and science are critical fields in which at times recruitment is hard.

In a few years I will be retiring and I want to make sure someone is behind me to take my place.”

Another program, The Real World Design Challenge is an annual competition for high school students in which they receive the opportunity to work on real world engineering challenges in a team environment. Each year, student teams will be asked to address a challenge that often confronts industries in the field. Students utilize professional engineering software to develop their solutions and also generate presentations that demonstrate the value of their solutions, according to the program’s website.

Anyone interested in how they can get involved in these programs contact Joan Brown, Aviation and Space Education Program Manager at 718-553- 3371 or by email at Joan. Brown@faa.gov.

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