The Engineering Series: A Guide to Engineering for Kids

female engineer

Think about the things you use every day. The car your parents drive you to school in, the tablet you play your games on, and even the shoes you wear; engineering is behind them all.

An engineer uses science and maths (and lots of creativity!) to come up with the solutions to every day problems and makes our lives a whole lot easier in ways that we take for granted.

You might think that it’s scientists that are responsible for bringing us new technologies and advances, but often it’s people like engineers who actually figure out how to make them happen.

What does an engineer do?

Picture an engineer in your head. What are they doing? Are they a man? Are they doing a dirty, heavy job, fixing something and using tools? Some engineers do this kind of work, but the reality is that engineers can work in all sorts of jobs, from computing to construction, medicine, space exploration, and more!

Engineering is not just a job reserved for men either, women work in engineering in many different roles.

What are the different types of engineering?

Chemical engineering

Chemical engineers find the solutions to everyday problems and improve our lives in lots of different ways, whether it’s making things from raw materials, creating and testing the products we use, improving the way food is produced, and coming up with the processes that keep our water nice and clean.

Mechanical engineering

Look around you. Every machine you can see and probably think of has been designed, built, and tested by a mechanical engineer. As a mechanical engineer, you could be doing anything from designing the newest cars on the market to developing prosthetics for people who have lost limbs.

Biochemical engineering

Biochemical engineers save lives and improve our wellbeing. They research and create treatments for illnesses like cancer, and they also look at ways of making the food we eat healthier.

Software engineering

Software engineers are hugely in demand in many areas of industry. They do everything from designing and testing computer programmes to designing video games, animation, robotics, and cyber security.

Electrical engineering

The world runs on power, so electrical engineers have a very important job, whether they are repairing or designing electrical equipment, designing and building robots for use in industry, or designing your latest smartphone or tablet.

Aerospace engineering

This is an exciting field of engineering, where you could be designing new aircraft, repairing or carrying out maintenance on flight simulators, or designing the next shuttle that’s destined for space!

Marine engineering

Marine engineers design, build, and install engines and the systems that keep our ships and submarines going full steam ahead. Some specialists even work underwater, whether they’re exploring the ocean or working on gas and oil pipes.

Materials engineering

These engineers have an increasingly important job to do since we’re all trying to live greener lives to protect the environment these days. Materials engineers are the people who are working on making materials more sustainable, durable, and recyclable.

Biomedical engineering

These engineers are the unsung heroes of healthcare. They develop new machines like scanners, design more comfortable and functional prosthetic limbs, and design the robots that are increasingly being used in complicated surgeries.

Environmental engineering

Environmental engineers are in high demand. They are the people that design and build our infrastructure like roads, railway lines, bridges, buildings, flood defences, and wind turbines.

After reading about the different types of engineering jobs, would you be interested in working as an engineer in the future? There are many different ways to get into engineering, and getting involved in STEM workshops and classes is a good start.

STEAM Lab runs classes and workshops aimed at teaching kids about science, technology, engineering, art, and maths-all while having fun!

Contact us to find out more.

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