This year in Minnesota, we are beginning a new focus in science on engineering. We focus on the design process and focus on creating projects for the students that create a setting for creativity, analysis, flexability, and group work. Students will be presented with a task with perameters, given materials, asked to work in groups to brainstorm, design, test, and redesign. The projects then are presented in a "contest" where teams compete to win fabulous prizes, like in classroom engineering projects. Some of the ideas we will be working on come from PBS's Design Squad. You can look here for fantastic resources about engineering.
It is GREAT learning, this is where I get goosebumps! Students love to design. Come in and participate with your student. Look for a post of the various projects and video of student work.