Accelerate STEM Learning Through Play!
Hot Wheels® Speedometry™ encourages inquiry and real-world, problem-based learning through play, hands-on activities and in-depth lesson plans that is mapped to state and national standards including Common Core State Standards (CCSS), Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). This education curriculum, co-created with researchers at the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education, combines Hot Wheels® fun, imagination, and action, as well as toys and track to accelerate learning. Read More
Speedometry™ is a free-to-use curriculum targeting fourth grade (8-9 year old) students. Comprised of two units with up to six lessons per unit, Speedometry™ provides coursework intended to cover a period of 10-12 days. Students work in collaborative learning groups to deepen their understanding of speed, angles, slopes, collisions, kinetic energy, and potential energy. The lessons and activities aim to put students on course for success in science and mathematics. A kindergarten curriculum for 5-6 year olds is currently in development and will be released at a later date.
With support from the Mattel Children’s Foundation, five faculty members began working with Hot Wheels® designers and (S)cience (T)echnology (E)ngineering (M)ath teachers in April 2013 to develop tools for teaching scientific concepts like velocity, kinetic energy and gravity using the miniature toy cars and modular track already beloved by children. USC Rossier education professors Gale Sinatra, Julie Marsh, Morgan Polikoff, Frederick Freking, and Angela Hasan led the project for a Speedometry™ curriculum for the elementary school students that will help teachers and parents reinforce key STEM concepts. The Speedometry™ curriculum is aligned with the rigorous expectations outlined in the CCSS, NGSS, as well as TEKS, and includes inquiry, play-based, and hands-on activities.
“With the need for more students in the STEM fields, teachers and parents need to find ways to make scientific topics engaging and accessible for students from an early age,” said Rossier Dean Karen Symms Gallagher. “The Speedometry curriculum brings science to life for kids while also being grounded by the research and assessment of learning experts in the field of education.” Read Less
Hot Wheels® Speedometry™ is a fun and engaging way to learn about concepts such as energy, force, and motion. Students also learn scientific and engineering practices such as analyzing and interpreting data. But the fun doesn’t have to end when the school bell rings – you can bring Speedometry™ learning home! After all, math and science are all around us.
Play is more than simply fun. Play helps to develop language skills, control impulses, reduce aggression, develop cooperation skills, and develop empathy. Play is also critical for the development of creative problem solving skills.
These activities are intended to provide a way to practice Science, Math, and Engineering through play. They provide an opportunity for families to share moments of joy, excitement, curiosity, and wonder. Watch the “Activities at Home” video and download the free Hot Wheels® Family Engagement Activities to try Speedometry™ at home with your kids.
The Results Are In: Hot Wheels Speedometry Scores Big in Fourth Grade Testing
The results of a district-wide test of the Speedometry curriculum show that Speedometry improved student learning relative to a control group. Key findings of the two-week study, which involved approximately 1,800 fourth graders in 59 classrooms, include:
- Speedometry leads to improvements in student knowledge, interest and positive emotions. Also, girls’ negative emotions about science and mathematics were found to decrease as a result of Speedometry.
- Students who experienced Speedometry out-performed who had not experienced Speedometry on a test of science and math content knowledge.
- Students who experienced Speedometry showed greater engagement, interest, and positive emotions about the lessons than students who experienced traditional math and science lessons. To view the Executive Summary of the report on the district-wide test, click here .
Robert Goodwin, Executive Director of the Mattel Children’s Foundation, said, “We wanted to make a sustained positive impact for children and their teachers, so it was important that the positive feedback we received from classrooms early on was backed by extensive research. These results confirm that play can enhance learning and increase child engagement.”
“With America’s need for more college graduates entering the STEM fields, teachers need to find ways to make scientific topics engaging and accessible for students from an early age,” USC Rossier Dean Karen Symms Gallagher said. “This program created a curriculum that brings science and math to life for kids and is grounded by the research and assessment of leading Rossier experts in education.”
MICROSOFT HACKS HOT WHEELS SPEEDOMETRY
Using everyday objects Microsoft hacks Hot Wheels® Speedometry™ to teach students about Forces and Motion. Click here for Microsoft’s Hacking STEM’s complete lesson plan, including a step by step guide to sensorize Hot Wheels cars and tracks to measure speed and collision force.
Classroom Kit Information
Thank you for your interest in Speedometry. While the curriculums and online videos & activities are free to access and use, we are currently not sending classroom kits. Please check back soon for an update.