The Design It! and Explore It! curriculum series each consist of about 13 introductory science and engineering projects. They were developed by Education Development Center (EDC) in Waltham, Mass with funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and are intended for use in after school programs serving elementary age students. Each project copnsists of multiple activities or challenges which build upon each other around a single design challenge of investigation. allows for the development of basic engineering principles (such as troubleshooting and optimization), exemplify the design process and promote problem solving and creativity.
The project Design It! Engineering in After School Programs offers a model of partnering in which science centers extend their traditional roles of providing educational experiences directly to children. In this model, the science centers train after-school program leaders to become the deliverers of science and design-engineering activities.
Explore It! involves children exploring familiar phenomena (such as air and water movement, reflection, and balancing) in an extended manner using simple materials to foster science learning. These investigations provide an experiential foundation for the development of concepts aligned with the national standards that are addressed in formal school curricula. Internet resources and visits by science museum educators will supplement and extend the implementation of the new curriculum.