STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — in an interdisciplinary and applied approach. Rather than teach the four disciplines as separate and discrete subjects, STEM integrates them into a cohesive learning paradigm based on real-world applications.
Gone are the days when educators used to categorize students as kinesthetic (doers), auditory (listeners) or visual (seeing and learning) learners. This construct of classification was brought about by the conventional methodology and is no longer valid.
Why STEM is the Ladder to a Better Future :
STEM-based education teaches children more than science and mathematics concepts. The focus on hands-on learning with real-world applications helps develop a variety of skill sets, including creativity and 21st-century skills.
21st-century skills include media and technology literacy, productivity, social skills, communication, flexibility and initiative.
Other skills attained through STEM education include problem solving, critical thinking, creativity, curiosity, decision making, leadership, entrepreneurship, acceptance of failure and more.
Regardless of the future career path considered by these children, these skill sets go a long way to preparing them to be innovative.
It is the people that change the world and it keeps getting better as we approach education in a holistic manner.
Telling students the rote steps to solve an equation is more efficient than letting them experiment with the concepts and helping them generate their own math epiphanies. Showing students what constitutes great art is easier than helping them analyze multiple examples and producing their own versions.
When time is short and pressure is high, we all succumb to the simplest routes, regardless of merit.However, a trait every problem solver must inculcate, irrespective of their areas of expertise, is patience. This is where the need for practice and rigor in education comes in. STEM learning enables this by letting students solve as many problems as they possibly can.
Accountability, a cornerstone of contemporary education policy, is increasingly characterized by external monitoring and an emphasis on outcomes or results.
One thing that comes up repeatedly in STEM fields is the necessity to be able to debug and resolve repeating errors. Mistakes and errors are a part of the learning curve, but STEM learning ensures that the student sticks to the error resolution portion without fail. Not resolving errors leads to the problem at hand (or project, for that matter) not being completed.
The use of creativity-based assignments to assess student learning is not as common in STEM classrooms as perhaps it is within those of other disciplines. On the other hand, there is a great demand for creative and innovative thinkers in STEM. While scientists and engineers are often perceived as only being concerned about hard facts and numerical data and computations, a great deal of creativity is required. Creativity is not something that normally comes to mind when characterizing a scientist or engineer. The fact that it takes a great deal of creativity when performing tasks within the STEM domains is often overlooked. This fact is overlooked not only in terms of perceptions, but also within the formal STEM curriculum.
To succeed in life, students have to be able to apply what they have learned to a variety of scenarios. STEM education teaches them to adapt the concepts that they learn to various iterations of a problem or issue.
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