In this STEM-centric transdisciplinary unit, students will work in teams to develop an eco-friendly T-shirt design using the engineering design process. They will begin by exploring individually what it means for a product to be "eco-friendly," and they will develop their own definition. Next, they will work in teams to identify one of the following environmental causes: air pollution, water pollution, landfill contamination and global climate change, and create a message that their T-shirt will promote. Students will then conduct research and develop a plan for their T-shirts that specifies the design, materials, packaging, and labor and manufacturing practices they wish to use. Students will refine their design based on feedback from classmates and additional pricing criteria. Finally, students will present their designs to the class for judging.
Throughout the lesson, students will use their Engineering Portfolios to keep track of their research and plan out their T-shirt design. It is recommended that teachers print out and assemble pages of the portfolio in advance. A printable version of the portfolio can be accessed from the Student Resources section of the website.