STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) is the latest educational methodology created by scientists from the US National Science Foundation in 2001. With the development of modern technology, the old system of school education is becoming less and less effective, because it does not connect subjects but presents them separately.
STEM education links between:
- Natural sciences.
- Technologies that allow you to apply the laws of nature in practice.
- Engineering, which allows you to use resources in your work.
- Mathematics, without which nothing works at all.
This approach not only makes it easier for the child to understand each subject but also allows you to apply theory in practice. To be an indispensable specialist, it is necessary to combine the acquired knowledge. This is what STEM project-based learning activities make it possible to achieve.
How to use the STEM methodology in teaching?
1) Working on a project in a team
A task is set, which is solved by implementing the project. Students must determine intermediate and final goals, decide who should do certain tasks, and plan the effective use of available resources.
2) The theory is supported by practice
All theoretical material must be demonstrated during the experiment.
3) Relevance of tasks
Students are required to complete homework and any projects related to real-world problems. For example, improving the state of the environment, solving supply chain problems, etc. The difficulty of the task depends on the age of the students. The teacher can give hints but cannot give a ready-made solution.
4) Variability of solutions
It is necessary to give such tasks that can be completed in different ways. Students must apply critical thinking, analyze the situation, and look for different solutions.
Why is it important to choose STEM education for a child?
Since training in this technique is constantly accompanied by practical experiments, the process is never boring. On the contrary, children are happy to learn the natural sciences and apply them in life.
This approach to education develops analytical thinking.
Tasks are both individual and team. The ability to distribute responsibilities and jointly look for ways to solve a problem will definitely come in handy in the life of any person.
The STEM methodology is to teach how to interact with the modern, developing world. Students learn to adapt to a rapidly changing environment and use the modern tools available.
It is worth noting that STEM education primarily trains general engineers. The knowledge gained will allow students to find a highly paid job as such specialists are in demand all over the world.
It is possible to prepare a child for such education from the very childhood. Use construction kits, conduct experiments, and develop the necessary skills and character traits. Track what your child likes to do and help him/her develop in this direction. If the choice fell not on the natural sciences but, for example, on fine arts, you should not be upset and force the child to deal exclusively with mathematics. Not everyone is required to become a programmer or designer. Do what you love!