STEAM Science Technology Engineering Art Math
What is STEM or STEAM?
STEM is made up of four disciplines: science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, where as STEAM incorporates art as well. The Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education has developed the 2016 Science and Technology/Engineering Standards (STE, 2016) in response to the need to develop the skills necessary to engage in scientific inquiry and engineering design. Furthermore, the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS, 2013) also provides several options of how to implement the integration of standards innovatively.
How are we implementing STEM/STEAM at the Academy?
At Al-Hamra Academy, STEM/STEAM based teaching and learning reinforces the importance of going beyond traditional methods of dispensing knowledge and rote memorization. Employing active learning strategies using project-based and problem-based learning empowers students to actively engage in their own learning. Teachers facilitate project-based learning by inspiring students to create tangible products and they promote problem-based learning thereby resulting in the acquisition of new knowledge.
Teachers engage the students in diverse thinking processes and practices that scientists and engineers use to examine and answer questions in the world around them. Moreover, implementing engineering design processes promote iterative and reflective practices such as:
1. Asking questions
2. Developing & using models
3. Planning & carrying out investigations
4. Analyzing & interpreting data
5. Using mathematics and computational thinking
6. Constructing explanations for science & designing solutions for engineering
7. Engaging in argument from evidence
8. Obtaining, evaluating, & communicating information
How do the Students benefit from STEM/STEAM?
STEM/STEAM teaching and learning develops 21st Century Skills. Enhancing our students’ skills in the following areas prepares them for a successful future:
Learning & Innovation Skills: Critical thinking, Communication, Collaboration, and Creativity
Information, Media, and Technology Skills
Global Awareness, Environmental Literacy, Health Literacy, and Civics
STEM/STEAM Professional Development
The services of expert STEM consultants guide STEM professional development at the Academy. Affiliations with Technocopia, STEM Beginnings, and WPI STEM Education Center strengthen our pedagogy in 21st Century Skills, science inquiry, and engineering design process. Teachers engage in meaningful supportive professional learning to enhance STEM/STEAM teaching and learning at the Academy.
All in all, as stated in our Vision and Mission, we strive to promote academic excellence in STEM/STEAM education to prepare our students to be future leaders who contribute responsibly in a global society.
Johnson, C., Peters-Burton, E., Moore, T. (2016). Stem road map: A framework for integrated STEM education. New York, NY: Routledge.
2016 Massachusetts Science and Technology/Engineering Standards (Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education).