What is the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge?
The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge is a K-12 environmental sustainability challenge. In the K-5 Challenge, students work together as a class under the direction of a teacher, who will serve as the Class Advisor/Mentor, to identify a local environmental issue or problem in their classroom or school, develop a plan, collect data, analyze that data, and share the results they have found.
How do I participate in the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge and what is my role?
Visit the Getting Started section of the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge to find all the information you need to launch a successful project. A teacher (who must be a full-time or part-time school employee), who will act as the Class Advisor/Mentor, must first register on www.wecanchange.com and then add his/her classroom team(s) in order to access the application. The Class Advisor/Mentor is responsible for completing and submitting the application. There are a variety of classroom-related resources to support your efforts in the Resources section of the website. See the Official Rules for more information.
Who is eligible to participate in the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge?
With the sole exception of students and employees of Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) schools, each Class Advisor/Mentor and each student team member must be legal U.S. residents of one of the 50 United States or the District of Columbia, enrolled in K through 5th grade at a public, private, parochial or home school located in one of the 50 United States or DC at the time of entry, under the supervision of a full-time or part-time school employee (who will serve as the Class Advisor/Mentor). Employees and students of a DoDEA school must reside on a United States military base. The Class Advisor/Mentor may choose an adult volunteer to support their team(s), but the adult volunteer will not be eligible for prizing. See the Official Rules for more information.
What types of ideas will win the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge?
Types of winning projects will all demonstrate that the classes have:
- researched background information to help define the problem or issue
- used the background information to develop the solution plan
- collected data as the plan is carried out
- used the data, both qualitative and quantitative, in analyzing the results
- drawn a conclusion about the effectiveness of the solution based on data
What are the goals of the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge?
The goals of the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge are to:
- engage students in identifying and solving local environmental problems
- utilize their creativity
- encourage community involvement
- recommend how others could use this solution in their communities
What specifically must be included on the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge application?
The application must be filled out completely by the Class Advisor/Mentor, and must include information on all of the following steps: Learn, Plan, Act, Share & Extend, and Reflect. The last step of the application for attachments is optional, but may be used to provide supporting images, graphs, etc. to your entry in a PDF file or YouTube video link. You will also be asked to include relevant citations for each step. Click here to view the elementary school Challenge application.
How will the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge be judged?
K-2 and 3-5 entries will be judged separately by an independent, qualified judging panel and there will be a first, second, and third prize winner from each grade band.
The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge will be judged on the following:
Local Environmental Issue or Problem
Class Advisor/Mentor and Student Effort to Expand the Solution
Creativity and Innovation
Sustainability and Replication
For more detail on judging requirements, visit the Judging Criteria section of this site.
Are home-school teachers eligible to apply for the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge?
Yes, home-school teachers and home-school students are both eligible to apply.
When are applications for the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge being accepted?
September 13, 2012 through March 5, 2013. All applications must be submitted by March 5, 2013.
When will the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge applications be judged?
There will be two rounds of judging after the Challenge entry period is over. Potential winning teams will be notified on or about March 27, 2013.
What if our project is ongoing? Does our class have to have completed a project in order to qualify, or can we submit a project in progress?
Problems or issues that students choose should be local and of manageable size for elementary school students to take on. It is not essential that the solution be carried out to full completion, but the process should be started and some results collected. If you are continuing work on a project that was started before September 13, 2012, you must cite any prior work appropriately within your application.
Can a student participate on more than one class?
No, students may only participate on one class.
When will the winners be announced?
The winners and finalists will be announced on or about April 22, 2013.
What are the prizes and how many will be awarded?
Please see the Prizes section for full details.
Do all participants of the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge receive something or just the winning teams?
Every team that participates receives an online certificate.
How do I access my profile or application?
Simply sign in to access your profile and application. The Class Advisor/Mentor must first register and create a class team before working on the application.
I can't remember my password. How can I access my application?
Class Advisors/Mentors can reset their registration password. Click on the password reset button. You will then be prompted for your username. A system generated password will then be emailed to you. You can use this password going forward, or reset the password in the "My Profile" area.
Is the Challenge open to students outside of the United States?
Yes, the Challenge is open to students at DoDEA schools, but they must reside on a United States military base at the time of entry. The Challenge is also open to students within one of the 50 United States or the District of Columbia, enrolled in Kindergarten through 5th grade at a public, private, parochial or home school located in one of the 50 United States or the District of Columbia at the time of entry.