April 14, 2008
Press Release, 08-16
USPTO Introduces New Intellectual Property Curriculum
i-©®eaTM Inspires Creativity and Teaches Students About Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights
Washington, D.C. - The Department of Commerce’s United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) today announced the launch of a new, dynamic curriculum that inspires students to be creative and teaches them about the value of patents, trademarks, and copyrights, as well as the importance of respecting other’s intellectual property. The i-©®eaTM curriculum, developed by the USPTO in collaboration with i-SAFE—a leader in Internet safety education—is an interactive and age appropriate unit of instruction designed for upper-elementary, middle, and high school students.
“If you own something that is valuable, you want to protect it. Since U.S. intellectual property today is worth more than $5 trillion, it is important that future inventors understand the process of protecting intellectual property, and that we instill an innovative spirit among students to keep the flow of innovation alive,” said Jon Dudas, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO.
The i-©®eaTM curriculum is a valuable resource for teachers to introduce students to the inventive process through cross-curricular activities, inspirational stories of young inventors, and practical hands-on patent and trademark searching on the Internet. Students apply their knowledge and skills to real life experiences and view themselves as creative individuals. In turn, young people, their parents, and their teachers gain an appreciation of the contributions inventors and artists make to our way of life.
i-SAFE trains and certifies educators to teach the i-©®eaTM curriculum through the i-LEARN Online video training modules (http://ilearn.isafe.org). The i-©®eaTM curriculum is the latest addition to the growing i-SAFE library of more than175 standards-based lesson plans offered at no charge and taught in classrooms in all 50 states. For more details on the i-©®eaTM curriculum, see: www.isafe.org/icreatm.
The i-©®eaTM curriculum is among USPTO’s ongoing educational efforts to reach out to the next generation of innovators. For example, the USPTO has teamed with the Ad Council for a three-year PSA campaign designed to inspire young people, specifically the “tweens” ages 8-11, to be creative and invent. In addition to television, radio and outdoor ads, the campaign includes a website, www.inventnow.org, where kids can engage in games and activities and use their creativity, as well as learn about the process of protecting their intellectual property. The radio and TV commercials are now playing throughout the country with the message, “Anything’s possible. Keep thinking.”
USPTO also supports:
- the National Inventors Hall of Fame’s educational programs for youth (grades 1 - 6) including Camp Invention and Club Invention;
- FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), founded by inventor Dean Kamen to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people; and
- the Sally Ride TOYchallenge, a national toy design competition for 5th - 8th graders designed to introduce girls and boys to engineering.