Drones in Education

Drone with two lights on

(Image credit: Unsplash/Matthew Brodeur)

The book Drones in Education by Chris Carnahan, Laura Zeiger, and Kimberly Crowley was written for educators who want to incorporate drones into their curriculum but have no idea where to start.

The book was created as drones are being increasingly included in instructional activities providing students with concrete examples of how STEM concepts are applied and utilized in the real world. Even short exposure to robotics can have a lasting impact on students to pursue complex careers that they may have never considered. This is important as it is projected that the nation will have up to eight million STEM jobs by 2018. In science and engineering classes, students are building drones and writing programs to steer them. School administrators are using the technology to create marketing materials for YouTube channels and websites, showcasing their school and grounds from a bird’s eye view. Sports programs are utilizing drones to record the action in fields below. In the curriculum, drones present a possibility of a broad range of applications. Just to take a simple flight or plan a route, students need to consider weight, height, angles, and speed. The key to the learning experience is to reinforce content knowledge with technology, in this case drones. The drones grab the students’ attention and engage them in an activity while they are applying and mastering the skills that they learned during instruction.

Additionally, the use of drones is growing in momentum in the work place. Applications are no longer limited to military or police operations. Scientists, construction workers, realtors, first responders, sports teams, band directors and many more professionals are finding the utility of these quad copters fueling a demand that this technology will quickly become a staple for college and career readiness.

Drones in Education will cover all that you need to need to know to get off of the ground with a drone program in your school. It covers such basic but important information as which drones need to be registered and where you can fly them. It also provides recommendations as to the drones that are best based on particular subject areas and students' ages. Complete with lesson plans, real-world applications, and tips on securing funding for drones, Drones in Education will provide everything teachers need to know to start using drones in the classroom. Visit https://www.iste.org/ to learn more.

Laura Zieger, Ed.D., is an Assistant Professor in the Educational Technology Department at NJCU.