Returning for its 30th year of inspiring innovation in the next generation of scientists, Toshiba and the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) are kicking off the 30th annual Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision competition, which is now officially open for entries. The ExploraVision program, sponsored by Toshiba and administered by NSTA, challenges students to use problem solving, critical thinking, and teamwork to imagine solutions to real-life issues. Participants will have a chance to win a number of prizes, including $10,000 U.S. Series EE Savings Bonds (at maturity). Registration is now open until January 31, 2022 at ExploraVision.org.
Since the program launched in 1992, ExploraVision has helped nearly 450,000 students across the United States and Canada to cultivate a life-long passion for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The competition provides a turnkey solution for teachers to excite and engage students, virtually and in person, in the science and engineering practices found in the Next Generation Science Standards – such as asking questions and defining problems, planning and carrying out investigations, and analyzing and interpreting data.
Through the competition, teams of two to four students are challenged to identify a problem facing our world, research scientific principles and current technologies, and design innovative solutions that could exist in the next 10 or more years. Semi-finalists then create websites and prototypes to further bring these concepts to life. Last year’s winning ideas ranged from AI-powered toothbrushes that can detect viruses, to eco-friendly diapers that reduce carbon emissions.
“We are thrilled to sponsor the Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision program for its 30th consecutive year,” said Ryuji Maruyama Chairman & CEO, Toshiba America, Inc. “We believe that fostering a passion for STEM from a young age is key to empowering the next generation of innovators and to realizing a brighter future for our world.”
“On this 30th anniversary, our deepest thanks go to Toshiba for their dedication to this program and their commitment to improving science education and learning. ExploraVision has introduced hundreds of thousands of K-12 students to new ideas, inspiring mentors, and exciting careers in science, technology, engineering and math,” said Eric Pyle, President, NSTA. “NSTA looks forward to our continued partnership with Toshiba and providing more students with the opportunity to identify and solve real-world problems, think like scientists, and develop personal connections with science.”
Competition Opportunities & Prizes for Students
Student teams compete in groups based on their grade levels: primary (K-3), upper elementary (4-6), middle level (7-9) and high school (10-12). There are two finalist phases to the competition, regional and national. In the regional phase, the 24 winning teams from six regions across the United States and Canada will receive a plaque for their school, and each member of the team will receive a Chrome book and additional prizes.
In the national phase, members of first-place nationally winning teams each receive a $10,000 U.S. Series EE Savings Bond (at maturity). Members of second place nationally winning teams will each receive a $5,000 U.S. Series EE Savings Bond (at maturity). Canadian winners receive Canada bonds purchased for the equivalent issue price in Canadian dollars. If health and safety considerations allow, all first- and second-place national winners will receive an expense-paid trip for themselves, their parents/guardians and teachers or mentors to Washington, D.C. for an awards weekend in June 2022. Activities will include a visit to Capitol Hill to meet with members of Congress and a Science Showcase during which the students will display and demonstrate their winning ideas, while also being formally recognized for their creativity and accomplishments.