For 30 years, the National Inventors Hall of Fame® (NIHF) has been a leader in providing innovative STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education programs, and has inspired millions of students across the country to embrace an innovation mindset.
This profound impact is made possible thanks to our amazing NIHF Inductees, whose inventions continue to improve the lives of people around the world. Because the curricula of all our education programs are created using lessons and stories from the lives of these world-changing inventors, students who participate in our in-school, afterschool and summer programs experience authentic invention education.
What is invention education?
Due to the rapid advances of technology in our society, parents and educators alike wonder what is the most effective way to prepare today’s students for the future. Is it even possible to prepare children for jobs that do not yet exist?
One of the best methods to do this is to equip students with what’s known as 21st-century skills — attributes like critical thinking, collaboration, entrepreneurship and creativity. These traits will not only be in increasingly high demand by future employers, but they are also useful for solving any kind of problem that does not have a clear or easy answer.
Invention education thrives under these conditions and invites participants to discover, or “invent,” solutions on their own. Embracing this active approach to education places students in control of their learning and encourages them to follow their interests and passions.
What makes NIHF’s style of invention education special is that we have the unique opportunity to collaborate with some of the world’s greatest inventors. Our Inductees understand deeply what it takes to create groundbreaking inventions, and throughout all our program offerings, share their experiences in hopes of inspiring a new generation of innovators.
Authentic Inductee integration
Developed by our expert education team, all of our education programs include lessons and stories from the lives and contributions of our NIHF Inductees. During the 20 months that it takes to develop each year’s curriculum for our flagship summer program, Camp Invention®, our education team interviews our Hall of Famers to uncover stories that program participants will find both inspiring and relatable.
These interviews are also used to learn more about our Inductees’ innovation mindset, so we can translate this way of thinking and creating into our lessons. Each activity in this year’s brand new Camp Invention curriculum, Elevate, brings these real-world lessons to life. For example, our Design Thinking Project™ activities give students the opportunity to create their very own product through the same brainstorming, prototyping and marketing processes that are familiar to many inventors and entrepreneurs. Throughout the week, children will also learn how to protect their creations using the power of intellectual property.
Learn more about our education programs
In response to COVID-19, NIHF has created new program options that bring the hands-on fun of Camp Invention into the homes of young innovators across the country. To learn more about how all our program options deliver authentic invention education, visit our website or contact us today!