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Principal Offers Five Keys to Successful STEM Implementation

Principal Offers Five Keys to Successful STEM Implementation

STEM is becoming a popular trend in schools across the country. For some administrators and educators, however, finding the right STEM program can be difficult. 

So says Todd Tyner, principal of the Mound Magnet for Science & Global Citizenship in Ventura, CA., who offers five keys to a successful STEM program in an article on 

His first "key" is to provide "integrate hands-on practice."

"Historically, our curriculum was primarily focused on math integration with some teachers offering science lessons a couple times a week, while others only a couple times a month," Tyner said. "In order to properly become a science magnet school, we needed a new approach. One way we sought to better integrate science into our curriculum was by dedicating one classroom as the science lab, a space for students (and teachers!) to practice science in a hands-on way."

Tyner said his school "also pursued several strategic partnerships with local farms, allowing us to connect our students to the agriculturally rich community in which we live. In addition to these partnerships, we also established a school garden. Both of these opportunities have been a great way to transform traditional classroom learning into a hands-on practice. By allowing students to take variables discussed in the classroom and put them to the test in their garden, you are giving them real-life insight into the experiences of both scientists and farmers."

Another key he provided was to "increase digital access school wide."

"In addition to desktop computers for teachers, each fifth grader also receives a Chromebook to use throughout the academic year, and we are in the process of implementing iPads into each classroom. With the grant, we were fortunate to receive a new computer lab, thus further increasing access to digital tools throughout the school," Tyner said. "Contrary to previous generations of students who prefer to read from hard-copy text, we are finding that students are becoming increasingly engaged in reading texts and other course materials from a tablet because they are fascinated by the technology in their hands, thus making our digital transition run even more smoothly."

Read the full story and comment below. 

Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor

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