STEM Research Resources For Teachers and Students
Computer Assisted Educational Resources For Elementary / Middle School
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What is STEM?
STEM Defined
STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education. We focus on these areas together not only because the skills and knowledge in each discipline are essential for student success, but also because these fields are deeply intertwined in the real world and in how students learn most effectively. STEM is an interdisciplinary and applied approach that is coupled with hands-on, problem-based learning.

For the latest research on integrated STEM education, see the National Research Council report STEM Integration in K-12 Education. What is STEM Video
STEM Literacy
A STEM-literate student is not only an innovator and critical thinker, but is able to make meaningful connections between school, community, work and global issues. A STEM-literate high school graduate can enroll in a college-level course of study in science, technology, engineering, and math without the need for remediation. STEM skills are increasingly necessary to engage in a knowledge-based economy. There is solid evidence to suggest that the fastest-growing and highest-wage jobs in future years will be in STEM fields and all employees will need to utilize STEM skills for problem solving in a wide range of industries.
Why Students Study STEM

Exposure to math and science has a bigger impact on students’ intent to major in a science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) field than does math achievement, according to a study published in the October issue of the American Educational Research Journal.

While math achievement is a significant indicator of whether students enroll in STEM majors (and was once thought to be the best predictor of future STEM entrance), early exposure to science and math courses has a greater influence on high school students’ interest in studying STEM fields, according to a study of nationally representative high school students entering college, "Why Students Choose STEM Majors: Motivation, High School Learning, and Post secondary Context of Support." However, the largest indicator of whether a student declared a major in a STEM field was their intent to do so. 

“Through their exposure to math and science they have room for developing their interests and experiencing the wonders and joys of math and science,” said the study's author, Xueli Wang, an assistant professor of educational leadership and policy analysis at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. “It’s speaking to the holistic experience rather than the one-shot test score.”

But the exposure effect has a smaller positive impact on underrepresented minority students than on white and Asian students.

Underrepresented minorities are also more likely to be influenced by early math achievement than are white or Asian students. Early math achievement influences students' belief that they can succeed in math, which, in turn, influences whether students choose to pursue STEM fields in college. 

These findings, Wang said, highlight the need to close racial disparities in math achievement at an early age. 

“We all need to be mindful of racial differences especially if we are thinking of diversifying our STEM pipeline,” said Wang, also a scholar at the Wisconsin Center for the Advancement of Postsecondary Education.

The study also found some gender differences that affected whether students intended to study a STEM field in college. Male students reported more belief in their own math skills than female students with comparable achievements. The research suggested that improving female students’ confidence in their math skills could lead to stronger interest in STEM fields.

Several other indicators were discussed in the study -- including initial post secondary experiences such as interaction with faculty and academic advisers and receipt of financial aid -- that affected whether a student majored in a STEM field.

Science
Engineering
​Mathematics
Is a STEM school right for my child?

If your child has an innate interest in science or building things, a STEM school may be a natural choice. But administrators say these schools cater to all kinds of learners and that most students appreciate the hands-on nature of the curricula. Students who manage their time well may succeed in STEM programs that are self-paced and have kids working on independent projects.
Technology
Missing the Mark with STEM!

What changes have actually occurred in the K-12 classrooms in this country since 2005? Have we seen far reaching innovations in curriculum and program design and in the structure of schools that would add to this STEM movement? Unfortunately, the answer is a resounding “No.”
American high schools still remain highly departmentalized, stratified, and continue to teach subjects in isolation, with little to no attempts to draw connections among the STEM disciplines.
Having worked in and visited numerous school districts within the past three years the author has observed many well-meaning curriculum developers and classroom teachers who indicate they are implementing a STEM program. This implementation usually resembles actions in which science, mathematics, and technology teachers plan and teach cooperatively. This may be a start;
however, it misses the mark! If this is the extent of STEM program and curriculum development, then there really is no program or curriculum, as the program and curriculum will disappear (if there ever was one) when the teachers change teaching assignments, transfer, retire, or leave the profession. This represents personalization and not institutionalization. Many educators have not yet come to the realization that STEM education is more than simply a new name for the traditional approach to teaching science and mathematics. Nor do they understand that it is more than just the grafting of “technology” and “engineering” layers onto standard science and mathematics curricula. As a result, there is little to no thoughtfully planned and implemented STEM curriculum in secondary schools. While many would argue this is a start to realizing STEM education within secondary schools, it is a far cry from actually planning, writing, and implementing an innovative, trans-disciplinary STEM program. 
What is happening now at the elementary and middle school levels? 
Teachers at these levels are ill prepared to teach the STEM disciplines of science and mathematics, as revealed by the low
numbers of highly qualified teachers. For now there are no national STEM standards or STEM teacher certification. If this is the case, are we really serious about STEM education and do we
have it as a national priority? The vision of STEM education, as advocated by the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine, is far from becoming a reality in the United States and will not be realized until the goals of STEM education are better delineated, the meta-discipline of STEM education is better defined, innovative STEM education programs and curricula are developed, and teachers are professionally educated to deliver new STEM programs and curricula. In other words, the form,
which includes program and curriculum design, and function, which are the desired results of STEM education are still largely undeveloped.


       What is Problem-Based Learning?

Welcome to the STEM Immersion Guide


Why you might consider a STEM high school

Over the past 10 years, jobs in STEM fields have grown three times as fast as jobs in non-STEM fields, according to the Department of Commerce, and STEM fields are expected to grow by 17 percent between 2008 and 2018, compared to just 9.8 percent growth for non-STEM fields in the same time frame. But without an influx of graduates in these areas, the U.S. will not have enough workers to fill those jobs. STEM schools can help young people gain the skills necessary to succeed in these fields. Over the next decade alone, the U.S. must produce approximately 1 million more STEM-degree graduates than currently projected to meet the demands of the economy, according to a 2012 report by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. Recognizing this gap, educators have focused on getting more students hooked on math and science earlier in their school careers, which is why more STEM programs are being launched nationwide.

You’ll mainly find STEM high schools, but there are some middle schools with a STEM emphasis, too. Some STEM schools are open to all students, meaning there are no tests required; others are selective and consider a student’s academic record in admission decisions.

There are three primary types of STEM programs:

A STEM specialty school: The entire school’s focus is on STEM and every student participates in a curriculum of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
A STEM program within a larger school: Some schools create STEM academies within their schools that allow interested students to study STEM in more depth.
Residential STEM programs: For these intensive programs, students live on campus and attend a STEM school.
Programs may delve broadly into all STEM subjects or they may specialize in a particular area, such as computer technology. Vocational or CTE programs that prepare students for certain high-tech fields also fall within the spectrum of STEM schools.

​STEM School 
Short Film about STEM education in Adams 12 Five Star Schools at STEM Magnet Lab School in Northglenn, CO
Why WE Need STEM In Our Schools
Exploring how improvements in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education can generate greater workforce readiness in the United States. Click here for Video
Are our schools teaching 50 year old science?
Video

 When most of us were in school we had Math and Science classes. Today, there is a growing concern among many educators and professionals that those courses just arent measuring up for a 21st century world. One of the educational strategies that has been developed to address these deficits is called STEM education: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. This week on What Matters, we get schooled on these initiatives with Jim Batterson, a former NASA engineer who was Senior Advisor to the Commonwealth for STEM Initiatives under the Kaine Administration and Rick Lally who is the Chairman Emeritus Hampton Roads Technology Council.
STEM Videos
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The STEM Guide
This tool helps educators determine their current level of STEM implementation (exploratory, introductory, partial immersion or full immersion), define their vision, shape their mission and goals, and plan how their schools can go to the next level.
STEM to STEAM: Resource Roundup
Whether you are looking for resources on integrating science, technology, engineering, and math or on infusing the arts to transform STEM into STEAM, this curated compilation will help you strategize around different approaches to integrated studies.

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Implementing STEM Curriculum In Elementary School
Lesson Plans / Experiments /Animations / Web tools By Grade Level
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Science
In this section of GCSE Bitesize you'll find learner guides and video clips designed to cover the latest GCSE and IGCSE Biology, Chemistry and Physics curricula.