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Van Project: Tech On Wheels

The goal of the van project (Tech on Wheels) was to develop educational materials science modules that could be transported and presented at local schools. An advisory board was put together from the Alum Rock district (included assistant superintendents and teachers) in San Jose in order to get information on what kind of outreach programs would be most needed.

The first modules developed by CPIMA were aligned with The Tech Museum’s online resource called “Tech Topics“. These Tech Topics are online activities that explore one science theme from the CA state science content standards for each grade.


Electricity was chosen for the fourth grade and became our first module topic. The electricity module was piloted to 4th and 5th graders at Lyndale Elementary School by CPIMA’s Scientist-in-Residence and a member from The Tech. The material was presented to 7 classes for a total of approximately 200 students.

A schedule was been developed for module development and testing. Much of the activity testing took place in the Museum at the appropriate Curiosity Counter or as floor programs. A second pilot in the Tech Laboratories was conducted with the electricity unit, along with the premier of a unit focused on the human digestive system. Another series of activities based on fiber optic technology was also introduced at the Communications Curiosity Counter.