Spark the Next
Innovation. Invention. Entrepreneurship.
Powered by Perspective.
We believe anyone can innovate.
But it’s been said that, while talent is equally distributed, opportunity is not.
So we developed an innovation learning framework based on the authentic objects and real-life stories that we’ve been collecting for the past 90 years. Our approach leverages The Henry Ford Archive of American Innovation, an unparalleled collection of 26 million artifacts that sheds light on the way people have innovated across 300 years of history.
The result is an innovation learning framework that only The Henry Ford could design. We call it Model i. It is the foundation of our curriculum, the basis of our learning experiences and the principle behind everything we offer to teachers and students of all types.
Our programs and resources are accessible to any educator and student, providing anyone the opportunity to solve global challenges for the future.
Curriculum and Resources
Discover our curriculum-aligned resources for bringing that breathtaking aha moment to your students. Lesson plans, activities, worksheets – all tied to specific learning objectives.
- Influence Tomorrow’s Leaders FREE Model i Primer This free facilitator guide (Grades 3-12) is your first step. The Model i Primer introduces the actions and habits of innovators, real-life stories and learn-by-doing activities that ignite your students’ innovative minds.
- Innovate Curriculum Based on the habits of the world’s greatest innovators, the Henry Ford developed this interdisciplinary online curriculum for middle schoolers to activate their innovative minds and inspire them to solve problems in their own school, community and world.
- The 7-Step Invention Process Invention Convention Curriculum Our curriculum is organized into a framework using the steps of the invention process, with the addition of introductory lessons to get students started and entrepreneurship lessons to teach next steps once the invention process is complete. This framework supports and enhances student understanding of invention and its context in the real world.
- Search. Browse. Connect. Resource Bank Explore, search and browse hundreds of resources for interactive learning at all educational levels. From short activities to in-depth units, let us help you find something to engage your students.
Transform your lesson plans with relevant learn-by-doing experiences that empower learners to realize their potential to help shape a better future. Whether you are a professional educator, parent or scout leader, you’ll give tomorrow’s dreamers and doers, creators and makers a chance to make lasting personal connections with lively stories, big ideas and 21st-century learning skills.
- Just Add Experience Field Trips Immerse your learners in the stories of real people who changed the world and help them find the path to their own brightest future. With 250 acres of objects and experiences to awaken awe and curiosity, The Henry Ford has everything you need to plan an unforgettable field trip tailored to your curriculum.
- Invention and Entrepreneurial Learning Invention Convention U.S. Nationals State-level convention winners come together to showcase and pitch their original product ideas at a national-level competition. Each student is representative of the thousands of K-12 inventors who participated in core invention and entrepreneurial learning in their home state.
- Habits of an Innovator. Actions of Innovation. Michigan Invention Convention It may be a state-level competition, but the students here have goals to change the world. Hosted at The Henry Ford, students in grades 3-12 pitch original ideas, inventions and innovations.
- Where Sparks Shine Brightest Camps and Activities The Henry Ford will keep your curious learner motivated and engaged with experiences geared to building problem-solving and critical-thinking skills in young people of all ages.
Learning inspires us — and lives at the core of our mission. Innovation inspires us, too. We look for every opportunity to bring the two together, both inside and outside the classroom. Find out about professional development programs for educators.
- Recognizing America's Most Innovative Teachers Teacher Innovator Awards The Henry Ford recognizes teachers who demonstrate ingenuity and resourcefulness, who approach teaching and learning creatively, and who are using the classroom to build 21st-century skills.
- An Opportunity to Learn More Educator Open House We offer open-house events throughout the year to introduce teachers to the array of experiences, educational tools and professional development opportunities that are offered by The Henry Ford.
- Social and Technological Change America's Industrial Revolution Workshop Participating teachers in this summer workshop become NEH Summer Scholars. Viewed through the lens of innovation, participants gain the unique perspective that only The Henry Ford can provide on the social and technological changes that Americans experienced from the 1760s through the 1920s.
Find out the many ways we work to further learning in our community and others.
- Unique. Engaging. Effective. Henry Ford Academy A unique college prep experience on the campus of The Henry Ford and surrounded by the Ford Motor Company. Henry Ford Academy is the first charter school of its kind.
- Education Inside and Out Henry Ford Learning Institute With its commitment to lifelong learning, Henry Ford Learning Institute extends learning beyond the classroom to create a community of curious, innovative learners to make an effective transition from the classroom to college and beyond.
- Community Commitment Youth Mentorship Program The Henry Ford works with a local school district to offer teens meaningful experiences, skill development and good role models so they can be the leaders of tomorrow.