The objective of The Picture of Health is to define a problem of personal importance—anything from asthma and peanut allergies to the physical challenges of navigating different environments using a wheelchair—then seek input from one or more individuals experiencing that problem about potential solutions. Through the engineering design process, you can create prototypes of those solutions.
Meet the Expert: Jim Collins
Millions of people around the world die each year because simple infections aren’t detected and treated in time. Jim Collins and his team at MIT aim to change that by building accurate and inexpensive tests for a variety of disease-causing microbes!
The World Health Organization asserts that health is a fundamental human right. But it is a right that is out of reach for billions of women, men, and children around the globe. Some have no access to physicians, nurses, or other trained healers. Others do, but their clinicians lack even simple diagnostic tools.
Take the ability to diagnose an infection. In countries and regions with developed health care systems, a blood sample is all that’s needed to diagnose malaria or confirm the potentially deadly blood condition known as sepsis. Such tests aren’t available in countries with developing or undeveloped health care systems, meaning proper treatment is delayed or never started at all. In developing countries, infectious diseases such as pneumonia, malaria, and diarrhea—all potentially treatable—are among the leading causes of death among children under age 5, and also affect millions of adults.
A Glimpse in MIT: Assistive Technology Hackathon
|Invisible Ink (All Ages)|
|Check out this classic science activity and turn the invisible…visible!|
|Light Painting (All Ages)|
|Get hands on with light and your camera to create a cool visual!|
|Light Sensors (6-12)|
|Experiment with light sensors around your house – your cell phone, a night life, or your eyes!|
|Open Ended Engineering Project (6-12)|
|Tackle a health challenge using the engineering design process!|
This annotated reading list was curated in collaboration with the youth librarian team at the Lucius Beebe Library in Wakefield, MA. All titles were selected based on their relevance to the theme.
This video playlist provides additional information about Jim Collins, his work, and the subject matter of The Picture of Health.
This Pinterest board links to articles and resources that provide additional information about Jim Collins and the subject matter of The Picture of Health.
Be sure to get adult permission before sharing…
- Your explorations with us on social media using #MITFullSTEAM and #PictureOfHealth
- Your questions with us on the Picture of Health Forums!