I often talk with educators (and parents and administrators) who are convinced that their students are working within Project Based Learning environments. They tell me about the wonderful projects ...
Nancy White's insight:
One of my basic understandings about best practice for STEM learning is that it needs to be project based. This is a great post that helps you think through if you are just doing projects, or are truly doing project based learning.
Watching a bit of the US Open last night, I was struck with the question of the source of motivation by athletes to work without cease, endure pain, sustain focus, and intensify commitment to a spo...
Nancy White's insight:
Wonderful article has me thinking...what if? What if the maker movement really permiated public education in such a way that students could pursue their passions? What if we allowed time for this kind of learning beyond sumerrtime enrichment? In my mind, this is what STEM should look like. We need to stop teaching in silos, rushing to "cover content" and start creating an environment where flow can happen. Allow time, provide resources & support - then watch the magic happen! Thanks @pammoran for sharing some of your magic with us!
STEM education isn't complex. It's not a doctrine, a program, or a product. Yet defining and implementing STEM education continues to challenge the education community.
Nancy White's insight:
I think this sums up why schools are slow to implement pretty well:
"To effectively implement a STEM program requires providing teachers with common planning time. Most STEM efforts require interdisciplinary, project-based learning. This challenges the very segmented and bell-driven school day that most of us recall from childhood and that continues to exist today."
Welcome to a series that is must read for any PBL or STEM educator. It will include information to reflect and build upon as you consider both PBL and STEM. Best of all, it will finish with over 50 amazing resources you will want to investigate. First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS.
KWL is an essential part of the PBL process - which is how to design learning for STEM. I love the additions to this process that provide more scaffolding for learners to connect with not just prior knowledge but also interests, think about their information search strategies, design their own way of showing their learning, and continue to question and wonder - making it clear that learning does not stop once the grade is recorded! Great work by @langwitches!
Adopting a Maker Movement in your school has got to be one of the strategies to integrate STEM into the culture of the school.
"A more direct way to support the Maker Movement in education is to establish hackerspaces affiliated with schools that can be accessed by students either during school as part of classes or after school. During school access would require flexibility on the part of teachers – but this also lends itself to a more traditional, structured curricular approach. Students can be provided with the tools and given general guidance, but also be allowed to explore within those parameters"
I believe school libraries are the best place to build hackerspaces in schools. This describes the 21st century library perfectly, "In a hackerspace the idea is to play, experiment, explore, pursue interests, and see where these things take you."
Fantastic work done in the state of Maryland on STEM education. Excited that my district is adopting the definition and STEM Standards of Practice:
Definition: STEM education is an approach to teaching and learning that integrates the content and skills of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. STEM Standards of Practice guide STEM instruction by defining the combination of behaviors, integrated with STEM content, which is expected of a proficient STEM student. These behaviors include engagement in inquiry, logical reasoning, collaboration, and investigation. The goal of STEM education is to prepare students for post-secondary study and the 21st century workforce.
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