STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) education is getting a lot of attention. But there are many barriers, including how to implement it, identify what works and does not work, and dealing with new roles that cross traditional department boundaries.
What is STEM?
Aimed at educators, this introductory video defines STEM (integrating Science, Technology, Engineering & Math), outlines the benefits, and identifies areas like school organization, teacher preparation, and student assessment.
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To prepare for the STEM adventure, PBS station KEQD offers this checklist of five questions your school needs to consider.
This 16 minute film looks at STEM education at the STEM Magnet Lab School in Northglenn, CO. Some quotes include, "I've taught insects before, and I've never taught it like this", "My goal is that every week they'll do something they'll never forget ... and it's a lot of fun!", "Humpty Dumpty keeps falling off the wall. How can we make a safe wall for Humpty?", "We get to do a lot of fun stuff like engineering and science", and "[My son] is always engaged."
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A growing body of research suggests that creating video games can be a highly engaging way for children to learn a range of STEM skills. Moreover, it encourages youth to take ownership over STEM knowledge, rather than viewing it as belonging to others. The National STEM Video Game Challenge encourages middle and high school students as individuals and small groups to create games and submit them to the competition. Talk about hands on learning.
Using this site's rules & guidelines, your class or school could have a similar competition.
Anne Jolly reviews how PLCs (Professional Learning Communities) were implemented, or not, and how STEM programs need a higher level of accountability.
What, exactly, makes a particular curriculum an authentic STEM program?
Anne Jolly proposes a list of 10 outcomes that STEM programs should focus on attaining. They include: engineering is a driving force behind STEM challenges, students (and teachers) feel comfortable working with technology, teachers are active learners, and STEM students work to solve real-world problems.
This post defines six characteristics of a great STEM lesson. Our favorite is: STEM lessons allow for multiple right answers and reframe failure as a necessary part of learning.
This site, a National Science Foundation initiative, provides information, events, and resources that highlight promising practices and tools in support of effective K-12 STEM education. The site highlights exemplary programs.
The STEM Education Coalition provides fact sheets, presentations and other resources to support STEM education. Chaired by NSTA, this joint effort of more than 600 business, professional, and education organizations provide advocacy to and resources for federal and state policymakers.
JASON's goal is to provide curriculum and learning experiences in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) for K-12 students, and provide high-quality professional development for teachers.
In addition to their for-purchase offerings, JASON sponsors free live STEM events which are then archived on YouTube.