SLED program challenges 5,000 students statewide

The Science Learning Through Engineering Design (SLED) program, intended to help teachers incorporate principles of engineering design into their classrooms, began in 2010. Initially funded by a seven-year, $6.7 million grant, the program has now impacted more than 32 schools, 300 teachers, 125 preservice teachers and 5,000 students. As a result of the program, Lafayette Sunnyside Intermediate School has been recognized as one of Indiana’s STEM Certified Schools.


Jimmy Minogue, Jessica Schenkel (BA ’13) and Arielle Mucha (BA ’12) are the SLED Teacher Leaders for Klondike Elementary in Lafayette.

The program has entered a no-cost extension that allows SLED researchers to disseminate their research at additional school corporations and districts throughout Indiana.

“The no-cost extension also allows us to help our master teachers become leaders,” said Brenda Capobianco, co-primary investigator of the SLED project. “This summer, we rolled out a SLED Teacher Leader Academy that allows teachers who have been in the program for multiple years to become teacher leaders for their schools or school corporations.”

Teacher leaders provide professional development for teachers at their designated schools, introducing other teachers to the notion of engineering design and encouraging them to implement design tasks. Learn more about the SLED program and find classroom activities and lesson plans: