Parents, Educators & Engineers

DESIGN SQUAD NATION Program Summary

Premiering on PBS in January 2011, DESIGN SQUAD NATION is a 10-part series of TV shows and video blogs that build on the success of the award-winning PBS reality competition series DESIGN SQUAD to get kids excited about engineering. DESIGN SQUAD NATION is high-energy, high-drama reality TV led by Judy and Adam, two professional engineers who work with kids around the world to make their wishes come true through engineering. From creating a park for skaters at the White Mountain Apache Reservation in Arizona to building a playground in a rural village in Nicaragua's northern mountains, the goal of DESIGN SQUAD NATION is to inspire viewers to take on their own hands-on engineering activities.

Educational Philosophy

Engineers have led a technological revolution that has improved the quality of our lives, yet many kids and adults alike do not understand how the technology they use in their daily lives works. They are also unclear about the engineer's role in society or even what an engineer does.

DESIGN SQUAD NATION is one of the few places on TV where kids can learn about engineering.

The specific educational goals of the DESIGN SQUAD NATION television series, Web site and outreach events are to:

Increase students' knowledge of engineering and the design process

DESIGN SQUAD NATION will be as hands-on as television can be.

Viewers see DESIGN SQUAD NATION hosts and kids using math, science, and technology to solve real problems.

Improve the public image of engineering

DESIGN SQUAD NATION presents viewers with positive role models who experience engineering as a fun and engaging process.

The image many still have of engineers is the outdated 'nerd hiding in a lab.' DESIGN SQUAD NATION goes a long way to address this. Our hosts are young engineering professionals, and the kids they work with come from around the world. And they're just as happy on a skateboard as in a lab.

Encourage further exploration

DESIGN SQUAD NATION is more than just a television series.

The DESIGN SQUAD NATION Web site extends the concepts presented on the show and provides viewers with an opportunity to explore engineering through a variety of social media experiences including an online community, a place to share their design creations, video blogging, and sharable minigames.

Engineers and educators have partnered with DESIGN SQUAD NATION to help support kids as they try out the ideas firsthand.