What do parents get out of Future City?
Future City will unleash your child’s ingenuity, strengthen their critical thinking skills, increase their motivation to learn science and math, and introduce them to engineering. As they imagine, research, design, and create a city of the future, they will discover new talents and gain confidence in their abilities.
How can I support my child?
How can I support my child? (Answer) Future City is a student led competition. Your job is to offer encouragement, snacks, and access to your recycling bin.
What will my child be doing?
Students will work in teams to brainstorm, design, and create a city of the future! For more details, see the Competition Deliverables.
Future City is designed around the engineering design process—identifying problems; brainstorming ideas; designing solutions; testing, retesting and building; and sharing results. With this at its center, your child will learn how to break down a large problem into manageable pieces, strengthen his or her understanding of core science and math concepts, learn the value of teamwork, and gain an understanding of engineering.
Yes! 40,000 middle school students participate every year. Kids are the drivers of the Future City experience. They come up with the ideas and execute the plan. By owning the project, with assistance from adults, they develop skills in such areas as leadership, time management, systems thinking, and teamwork.
Students may spend 50 to 70 hours on the project. Future City can take place in the classroom, in an after-school club, or sometimes it is a mix of the two.
There is a low registration fee of just $25 per organization. That fee covers all of an organization’s teams, from one to one hundred. Additional costs include the $100 budget for the model and presentation supplies. A team may also incur some travel costs going to the Regional Competition. Talk to the team's educator about any financial support that the team might need.
Absolutely. Teams from home schools are welcome. You will just need to submit the Home School Affidavit to confirm that you are covering material appropriate for 6th, 7th, or 8th grade.
Future City is open to children in 6th, 7th, and 8th grades. It is for children of all abilities, learning styles, and academic interests. Email your Regional Coordinator for more information.
Making It Happen
No. Future City is first and foremost an educational program. Encourage your child to talk to the educator or engineer mentor about what role best suits his or her talents and interests.
Read all about the Competition Deliverables and typical planning timeline. Each region has different due dates. Please check in with your educator to determine when each of the items is due. Due dates typically range from late November to early January.Email your Regional Coordinator for more information.
Like any team-based experience, there will be ebbs and flows of energy. Help keep your child motivated and focused. Don't let your adult world limit your child’s imagination. It is amazing what ideas he or she will generate. Be supportive of their ideas and celebrate his or her achievements.
The engineering mentor serves as an advisor to the team. He or she may visit the classroom or after-school program to answer questions or teach the students about his or her specialty area. Mentors serve as professional role models and help motivate the students.