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Hotshots Smart Move Project. Riding the Rails to Regionals!. Identify a Problem. Begin your project by describing your community. Is it your school? your neighborhood? your city, village, or town? your country? the world? Be prepared to share how you defined your community.

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Hotshots smart move project l.jpg

Hotshots Smart Move Project

Riding the Rails to Regionals!

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Identify a Problem

  • Begin your project by describing your community. Is it your school? your neighborhood? your city, village, or town? your country? the world? Be prepared to share how you defined your community.

  • Next, create a list of the ways that people, animals, information, and things move in, around, to, and through your community. Be creative. Be silly. Be serious. Think about everything that gets moved, including yourselves!

  • Pick one way that people and things move in your community and learn more about it!

  • Do research!

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  • What makes your mode of transportation dangerous?

  • What prevents people, information, animals, and things from getting where they need to go?

  • What makes them take longer?

  • What makes them burn more fuel?

  • Use any research tools you have available.

    • Search out the problems.

    • Look at reports.

    • Read books.

    • Browse websites.

    • Conduct a survey.

    • Check with experts who work in and around your community.

  • Be prepared to share your information sources.

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Create an Innovative Solution

  • Choose one of the problems and suggest a solution.

    • What can be done to fix the problem?

    • What will it take to make your team’s solution happen?

    • How will your solution help your community?

    • How can your team make moving from one place to another safer and easier?

  • A great solution might take all the imagination and ingenuity your team can muster. It might seem so obvious that you wonder why the problem even exists.

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Share with Your Community

  • Tell your community about the problem you researched, and how your solution can help. Here are some ideas.

    • Give a talk for parents.

    • Create a website.

    • Perform a skit.

    • Make a comic book.

    • Rap.

    • Create a poster.

    • Pass out flyers.

    • Write a poem, song, or story.

    • Present your research and solution to lawmakers.

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Presentation to the Judges

  • It can be simple or elaborate, serious or designed to make people laugh while they learn—but to be eligible for project awards at tournaments, it must:

    • Describe your community, the problem, and your team’s solution

    • Show that your team did the research and tell about your information sources

    • Be shared with someone outside of your team

      Note:  The total length of your project presentation at a tournament or qualifier should be no more than five minutes, including any setup time.

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Topic Guide

  • Project How-To Guide

  • Talking with Experts

  • Smart Move Activities

  • Smart Move Glossary

  • Questions? Email or read the Project Q&A

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Transportation Security

  • Learn about Transportation SecurityWebsite created for FLL Teams, sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) National Transportation Security Center of Excellence (NTSCOE)

    Careers, Professional Organizations, and Research Organizations

  • Official Kids’ Portal to the US Government: Careers

  • American Society of Civil Engineers

  • University of Michigan SMART

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SMART undertakes research, demonstration projects, education, and global learning exchange on a range of issues related to the future of transportation in city regions around the world.

  • Institute for Transportation & Development Policy

  • World Business Council for Sustainable Development Mobility Project

  • Transportation for America

    Regional Planning, Sustainable Growth and Specific Examples

  • Some predictions about transportation in the 21st century based on interesting statistics (such as age of population and internet access)

  • Great information about factors considered in regional planning

  • Information about trends toward sprawl and urban clusters

  • The New Mobility Agenda

  • Reconnecting America

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Specific Examples & Systems

  • Inspire Mobility blog

  • How the city of Boston uses various modes of transportation

  • Multi-modal transport hub at the Hong Kong International Airport

  • CivitasEuropean cities

    Forms of TransportationRails West -studies the current status and history of U.S. railways

  • Information about sustainable transportation

  • smarttransportation.orgNon-profit organized to increase the awareness and availability of clean technology in the transportation sector across the US. Site has a lot of information about hybrids and other alternative vehicles.

  • Article about Smart Bikes and bike sharing programs

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Specific Technologies

  • How Stuff Works: Maglev Trains

  • GPSAn explanation of GPS from NASA

  • How Stuff Works: GPS

  • GarminSpecific Garmin GPS devices

  • Triangulation and how it is used

  • Tons of resources about GPS, transportation, and mapping.  The format seems a little daunting at first, but contains lots of info about cool advances.


  • General AviationInformation on air navigation

  • The possible future of air traffic control


  • Online aeronautical charts

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  • plan for comparing various modes of transportation with a focus on electric energy

  • Federal Aviation Administration page with activities for kids

  • and kid friendly sites for transportation

  • lesson plans for coaches / homeschooling / classroom use

  • activities you can do at home

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  • Carlisle City

  • Warren County Online Mapping

  • Ohio Department of Transportation, District 8

  • Warren County Engineer's Office

  • Safe Driving

    Railroad Connections in Carlisle

  • CSX

  • CSX Maps

  • Norfolk-Southern

    Train Connections for Kids

  • American Experience: Riding the Rails

  • American Experience Streamliners: America's Lost Trains

  • Crayola Flip-Fast Train project for kids

  • National Railroad Museum

  • Steel Rails and Iron Horses

  • Transit People: Train Era

  • Union Pacific: It's Just Railroad Talk

    Other Train Companies

  • Conrail

  • Florida East Coast

  • Kansas City Southern Industries

  • Union Pacific Railroad Home Page

  • Amtrak

    Train Resources

  • Association of American Railroads

  • RailFanClub Resources for teachers

  • (AAR)

  • Brainy’s World

  • Railway Technology

    History of Trains

  • Norfolk Southern History

  • Transportation History Collection at Virginia Tech

  • National Railway Historical Society

  • Norfolk Southern Historical Society