Project Summary
The goal of this project is to develop a coloring book activity that introduces young people to math, physics and mechanical engineering concepts related to bicycles. The initial goal is to create a coloring book that is an engaging and compelling activity for students in grades 4 through 8, with a second phase to be completed after E-week 2006 that includes more complex technical content for grades 9-12. Each book level will be bundled with an appropriate teaching guide for that level. For example, one "bundle" could consist of one teaching guide, 30 coloring books and 30 pencil packs. The coloring activity is to be guided by the "teacher" or session leader, in such a way as to engage the young people in topics related to how a bicycle works, what the design considerations are, etc. The leader can then take the discussion into broader topics such as careers in mechanics and engineering.

SWE Strategic Priorities
This activity fits into SWE-MN section's FY06 Tactical Plan, Strategy D, Goal #2: "Provide guidance and support to teachers and counselors to expand the involvement of girls and women in math, science, and engineering curricula offered at academic institutions"; and Goal #3: "Publicize the knowledge that engineering is an exciting, dynamic, and noble career for women". The coloring activity is meant to draw girls and young women into the mechanical workings of a bicycle, and pique their interest in pursuing technical and/or engineering careers. As a facilitated session led by a SWE member, it also gives the students a role model who can answer questions about her own career and the path she went on to get there.

Project Benefits
The tangible benefits of this coloring activity for the participants are that they will go home with a coloring book and a pencil pack they can keep. The completed coloring book can be used as a reference to help them remember what they've learned about bicycles. The intangible benefit to SWE and to the society as a whole is a group of young people who have some knowledge of mechanical systems, how and why they are created to work together, and possibly the curiosity to pursue technically oriented careers. The main point of this activity is to help young people become more comfortable thinking and asking about technical concepts.

The very tangible benefits to SWE-MN may be significant income from interested educators who wish to purchase these teaching bundles. This project may also help us develop relationships with local bicycle merchants and manufacturers to facilitate cooperative activities in the future. SWE-MN and SWE National may benefit from higher visibility in the general population as this coloring activity grows in popularity.

Other SWE professional and student sections may be interested in purchasing these outreach bundles, as well as other professional and student organizations involved in outreach activities.

The intention is for the sale of teaching bundles to support subsequent printing runs so that the coloring activity supports itself. If income levels exceed costs, then SWE-MN will absorb the income into our budget for other uses.


Roz Doild Creator and Project Lead
Cassie Piippo Sponsorship
Jill Schwarz Book Layout and Life Illustrations
Rob Halvorson Technical Drawing