Coaches/Teachers: General Information


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General Information

Your students can make a difference!

Hundreds of middle school teachers and community organization leaders have experienced for themselves the excitement of engaging their students in hands-on learning and community involvement in a real-world setting. We want you to be part of it! Become a Christopher Columbus Awards coach and help a team of students discover what they can do with the power of teamwork.

Team PhotoToday's middle school students are the Innovation Generation — everyday kids with untapped potential who are creative problem-solvers. Unlocking that potential is the mission of the Christopher Columbus Awards program, a cutting-edge national competition that combines science and technology with community problem-solving in a real-world setting.

Students work in teams of three or four with an adult coach to identify a problem they care about and use science and technology to develop an innovative solution. They work with experts, conduct research and put their ideas to the test, just like adult scientists. Participating in the Christopher Columbus Awards program is a cross-curricular activity that:

  • Meets science education standards.
  • Teaches the scientific method while solving everyday problems.
  • Introduces hands-on discovery learning.
  • Improves critical-thinking skills and team problem-solving.
  • Addresses the service learning aspect of many current curriculum.

Competition GuideOpen to all students in 6th, 7th and 8th grade, the Christopher Columbus Awards is an experience that will not only motivate your students but will also teach them lessons about science, their community and themselves that will last a lifetime.

There's no cost to enter and this website contains all the information you need to know to participate in the program. Click here to download a PDF of the 2014-2015 Christopher Columbus Awards Competition Guidelines.