STEM to STEAM to STEAMIE: Turning Up The Temperature On Stem Education


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Before STEM - Once upon a time and a very long time ago in schools across this land their lived the separate disciplines of Science, Industrial Tech, and Math. Each was contained in its only little box and kept separate from from another. Students consumed content from each box, but very seldom did the practices meet. While concepts and theories were related among the three, they each had their place, function, and time of delivery. There were moments when individual teachers would walk outside the box and even find a partner to share a box with. But the emphasis remained on distributing and testing the content found in these separate . After all, the United States was a dominate economic power in the world, students were educated to serve the work force with a life time skill, and the world was still round. Soon STEM started to show up and in the space below I have included some resources that will allow you to learn more about STEM education.

National Science Board - A clearing house for the National Science Foundation in regards to STEM education.
Purdue Libraries - Stem Education Research
AAAS Project 2061 - Project devoted to increasing STEM education befor teh next return of Halley's Comet
Ed Gov STEM Blog - Latest information on STEM efforts by US Government.
National High School Alliance on STEM - Great links and resources to learn more about STEM

STEM - The idea of STEM Education involves integrating the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math in order to provide programs that allow students to transfer knowledge across the curriculum making learning more relevant. Perhaps it was the teachings of Dewey, the determination of WWII, the launch of Sputnik, or the 1967 Cambridge Conference of the Correlation of Science that first promoted STEM education. For those wanting to investigate the events that led to the advent of STEM Education since 1746, a visit of the History Of STEM Education Timeline may be worth a trip. It may have been the 1983 study of A Nation At Risk, that first suggested that the world was loosing it roundness. While integration of content area had been debated for decades, it was 2001 research by Marlene Hurley that may have provided positive evidence for curriculum integration. The content specific TIMSS Tests higher United States rating over the application based PISA Tests confirmed that students in the United States were not always applying content they learned. The last few years have seen a real spark in STEM education through out the United States and the World. In fact, the STEMed Caucus lists the following reasons for promotion of STEM education. They include;
1. Scientists and engineers who will continue the research and development that is central to the economic growth of our country
2. Technologically proficient workers who are capable of dealing with the demands of a science based, high technology workforce;
3. Scientifically literate voters and citizens who make intelligent decisions about public policy and who understand the world around them.
I have listed some great STEM Resources to get your students involved below. I encourage you to visit these and see how STEM not only supports Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math but will also enhance efforts in Project Based Learning, 21st Century Skills, and NETS Standards.

Siemens We Can Change The World Challenge - Great site loaded with resources, standards, and ideas. Either compete or just use the resources that are provided. Applicable to all levels of K12 education.
Kids Science Challenge - Awesome and inspiring challenges involving bio-designed scientific inventions, sports on Mars, and detective science. be sure to check out the great podcasts listed in Pulse of the Planet.
Young Scientists Challenge - Great resource for those students in the K-8. Lessons, multi-media, and lessons that can be incorporated into PBL
National Engineer Week: Future City - Great Project Based Learning Activity incorporating STEAM along with Language Arts and Social Studies. Engage students with Sim City Software, model building, and a new curriculum designed to integrate.
The Jason Projectt - Wow, what an awesome set of free digital curriculum filled with multi-media, simulations, readings, class activities, and projects! Check out that roller coaster simulation just to name one!
Siemens Discover STEM Academy - Vast amount of lessons, multi media, activities along with webinars that are some of the finest for both student learning and teacher professional development.
eGFI Dream Up The Future - A huge data base that will engage students with its colorful and students center interface. Make sure to check all the links including all the STEM resources found in the Teacher resource area.
NSF Resources For STEM Education - A great collection of teacher resources, instructional material, assessment, and up-to-date research regarding STEM.
PBS STEM Education Resources Center - Great information from PBS including engaging lessons, activities, and of course those award winning PBS videos.
NSDL - The National Science Digital Library has some outstanding resource tyhat include numerous links to some great STEM programs and organizations.
Design Squad Nation - Another great service from PBS filled with some entertaining and engaging ways to integrate STEM into any classroom.
Museum of Science - Great data base to search for lessons and ideas involving science, math, engineering from one of the finest science museums located in Boston.

STEAM - It actually is quite obvious that the Arts be included in STEM education. A look at the works of Leonardo da Vinci will attest to this! The very first time I heard the idea of integrating the Arts into STEM education was while watching a keynote made by Daniel Pink at the NECC Conference in Washington DC. Pink presented strong evidence to include the right brain activities to what included historical left brain activities. A reading of his book A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule The Future is a must for any educator, especially those interested in STEM education. It is evident that STEAM allows for true innovation, and it is innovation that will allow students success in a flat world. Bringing the Arts allows students to remember the creative juices that come with the smell of a Crayola Crayon, the engagement of Tinker Toys, and the creation and remixing of that first Easy Bake Oven. It is the STEAM that allows students to not just be technology consumers, but technology creators! Proper infusion of the Arts will create a STEAM culture that engages and promotes intrinsic learning. In the space below I have included some sites that may just allow educators to integrate teh Arts allowing STEM to become STEAM!

Teacher Vision Art and Math - Great activities and lessons that allow Art to be integrated into the Math curriculum.
NPR Where Science Meets Art - Some exceptional podcasts integrating Science and Art.
Arts Edge - A fantastic resource from the Kennedy Center hosting numerous lessons that integrate Art in the curriculum
New York Times Learning Network - Blog produced by NY times that has some great lessons including Art Integration
National Gallery Kid Zone - Loads of interactive Art tools that can be used for math, science, and engineering occasions
Exploratorium - Take a look at the entire site, but especially explore the Art related material
Science and More To Music - What a wonderful collection of MP3 songs written and performed by Dr. Lodge McCammon. Have kids perform to music using Flip Cameras and digital still cameras
Edsitement - I include this site from the National Endowment for the Humanities because of its vast collection of Art related resources aimed at the Social Studies and Languauge Arts areas. When doing an interdisciplinary unit with Math and Science one may find a good tie in from this excellent resources.

STEAMIE - OK, we have integrated the disciplines to create STEM and have even infused the Arts to include STEAM! But somewhere along the way we are not delivering on two goals that were ealier stated by the STEMed Caucus. They include;

1. Technologically proficient workers who are capable of dealing with the demands of a science based, high technology workforce;
2. Scientifically literate voters and citizens who make intelligent decisions about public policy and who understand the world around them.

I advocate that this is only possible by turning STEM to STEAM and then making it STEAMIE. The important IE suffix adds on the important concept to "Include Everyone". There are outstanding extracurricular programs that are a success because kids want to do them. This includes First Lego League, Vex Competitions, and Future City just to name a few. I believe that these types of programs can be embedded into the curriculum to benefit all students. In fact many have programs,curriculum, and matching standards to make this a possibility. I had the opportunity to attend a meeting with Dr. John Holdren, Assistant to the President for Science and Technology, regarding White House initiatives toward STEM. He made it evident that STEM must include all students. The National Academies has made highlighted this principle by including Engineering and Technology as a quadrant in a draft for the new National Science Standards. I had the recent pleasure of listening to Pat Galloway, the first woman president for the American Society for Civil Engineers" address the need for including all students in STEM education. I quote I especially enjoyed from Galloway is included below.

"Art was the love of my life and I won several awards for my pencil sketches. I was sure I was going to be either an interpreter for the United Nations or a lawyer! Then I attended a mandatory lecture at my high school on engineering. The professor, from the University of Kentucky, was a structural civil engineer and had brought along several renderings of buildings. These renderings caught my eye because one of the items that I sketched the most was buildings. The professor added that, as a woman, I would have wonderful opportunities in the engineering field and would command a nice salary. I was sold!”

When first integrating PLTW curriculum at the middle school I now teach in, the idea of including all students was essential. Rather then placing it in the Industrial Tech Area, we formed a new block of time for all students. This ISB (Integrated Solutions Block) now serves all students, all three years, integrating the core curriculum with STEM, Technology, PBL, and 21st Century Skills.. Included in the STEM portion is a PLTW Gateway Curriculum integration, including all students. This decisions has allowed many students to experience and later pursue STEM careers that may not have had this opportunity or introduction. It also allows for all students achieves the top two goals stated above by the STEMed Caucus In the space below I have included resources that will assist in the integration of STEM for all students. I have even included some great STEM related programs that are open source and available for free. This also extends the experience to everyone since with the exception of the computer programs can be used at home with out cost.

PLTW - Project Lead The Way has an great collection of resources for middle and high school. While the high school programs are more structured the middle school programs allow for a lot of flexibility. While this is not a free program it can be written into a lot of grant situations and can be embedded into the curriculum for all.
Scratch - What an awesome program from MIT! It can be incorporated across the curriculum and of course allows for that fine arts integration. It allows for the implementation of 21st Century Skills. You will find a vast amount of information with a mountain of additional resources at my Wiki under the Scratch Navigation Button. Best of all it is free and at that price it is a better bargain then programs that can cost into the hundreds!
SketchUp - A great Google product allowing you to bring design and CAD into the curriculum for free. Many states, including Indiana, have a free contact even for the Pro Version. It is so much fun to see how it integrates into Google Earth. Imagine the implications for social studies and science integration.
Google Earth - Another Google product that can be used to integrate math, science, and social studies together. It really gives kids an opportunity to travel the world, create with SketchUp and never leave home. Check out all the lessons in the educational portion!
Claymation at Wichita - I am in the process of making a claymation site but while I do take a look at this site from Wichita. I am excited about claymation and what can be done to help kids learn at all age levels. This site provides links to types of resources regardless of platform. The awesome think about claymation is it really can be used to fuse curriculum together,
GIS From ESRI - Another resource that will bring all the curriculum together, and almost fro free. I have included a link to a spot in this Wiki and will tell you how to order a book(s) for about $30. It will give you access to one year free software from ESRI, plus lessons that incorporate science, math, and social studies. Do a PBL project about your community and post it on-line and the software is free to your school for always! Check it out!
White House Info - Want to learn more about STEM for Everyone and the White House perspective. Check out this press release along with related links and a video entitled, "Who Inspired You?"
GPS Loaner Program - It is time to get kids outside and integrate the outdoors with STEM. Brings back my early days of outdoor education. I include this because it includes the opportunity for everyone to participate with GPS Devises because they are loaned out in class sets for free! Plus, check out all the resources on the site!
Glogster - OK, I had to include a Web 2.o site that I think can apply across any curriculum. It is free and can be used for even a virtual Science Fair! Another chance for everyone and every curriculum! Great way to make STEM quite STEAMIE! I have included the educational link!
Concord Consortium - I have included this because it contains resources that allow you to use everyones sceince probes with their software. I included this link to an article in this Wiki that better describes this free web site. You can even build your own probes! Great data collection, models, simulations across Science and Math for everyone!
New Science Standards Draft - An article from Education Week focusing on new Science Standards Draft including emphasis on Technology and Engineering. A must read for those intent on facilitating STEM education for everyone. You may want to also check this update from NSTA.

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