STEM Real World Expansion Pack Google Expedition
Project Introduction: A 4th grade teacher at will address student perceptions concerning real world applications of elementary curricular content and utilize a variety of kits, new technology tools, and impactful guest speakers to support current standards in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) and Social Studies throughout this year-long project. They will work with 16 other classroom teachers in third through fifth grade on how to incorporate these tools into their regular classroom setting as well. This project will focus mainly on broadening student understanding of connections between their learning, their future, and their view of the world.
Problem Statement: Schall Elementary is a pivotal building for the district. As a third through fifth grade building, Schall bridges the gap between lower elementary and middle school. These students are capable of understanding high levels of curricular content with real world connections, but the district does not currently have many resources available at this level to address the growing need at these grades. In addition, because of its location at the center of the county, students at Schall Elementary do not have the same opportunities as their more metropolitan counterparts to experience these real world applications and may never have the occasion or ability to leave our rural area.
Project Importance and Uniqueness: The expected results are that students will improve their perceptions of how the real world applies to curricular areas, developing a greater understanding of science, technology, engineering, math, social studies, problem solving, and critical thinking as well as a better connection between the students of and the community. Through the use of experiments and lessons, students will gain real world knowledge and experience in these areas. They will be able to virtually visit places they have previously lacked the opportunities to see in any way other than simple photographs and give others the ability to virtually see our local area, increasing student knowledge and understanding of the things that make our community unique. Relationships with influential local individuals and groups will be fostered to increase understanding of how the curriculum applies to the real world, while broadening student understanding of the world around them. They will become better local and global citizens through these experiences and learning objectives.
Funding: Funding for this project was provided by the Janks Fund of the Tuscola County Community Foundation.