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STEM News Roundup: On the Cutting Edge of Curriculum Advancements

STEM News Round-Up: The Digital Age & STEM

This week in STEM, we look at how the digital age is facilitating the studying of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math studies across the country's schools and communities.

STEM & Tech Firms

The biggest investors in STEM are quite often tech firms seeking to ensure a promising workforce in the field.

This week, the Orlando Sentinel featured Angela Alban, who "appeared as part of STEM Connect, a Florida High Tech Corridor program that aims to increase interest in STEM careers. It's one of several ways businesses target younger students as tech companies try to identify and grow their future workforce."

Alban works for the tech company SIMETRI, which designs and constructs realistic body parts to help train military medics and first responders. She represents just one of many in the tech industry looking to involved with teaching young learners how to get involved with STEM.

"'It's important to expose young minds to things within their community that might spark an interest for them ... Getting them to ask questions and do research is a valuable thing we can do,'" Alban told the Sentinel.

Read the full story here

STEM & Digital Conversion

One of the ways teachers seek to best teach STEM and to level the playing field in the education environment is by using a digital conversion model.

A digital conversion model is moving away from paper and going digital, typically supported by one-to-one initiatives, in younger grades as early as 3rd grade in order to ensure that every student is literate in technology early on.

This week, Knoxville News Sentinel took a look at district that is ahead in teaching STEM because it is using a digital conversion model.

"As part of the program, iReach, a digital conversion model, will allow STEM teachers to focus on the students' projects rather than compatibility and other technical issues, according to Maryville High School STEM teacher Jill McElroy," the article said.

Maryville High School teachers told Knoxville News Sentinel that their children leave the school and its STEM programs ahead of the game and ready to take on the challenges that higher education brings.

Read the full story here.

STEM & Makerspaces

A big part of the growing use of technology in learning is the advent of the makerspace, a designated area that provides supplies and typically a lot of tech for learners to create.

This week, EDSurge took a look at 2015 Pittsburgh FAB Institute held in late June at Elizabeth Forward High School that helped 75 different educators professionally develop in not only STEM, but also in specifically makerspaces.

"For the first three days of the Pittsburgh FAB Institute, the 75 educators rotated through two stations each day, where each station lasted three hours and the educators were grouped according to ability. To get the educators revved up, each morning started with a keynote speaker to inspire the educators about design and creating makerspaces within schools," the article said.

This kind of conference focusing on makerspaces exemplifies the surge of technology used in STEM- not only for the obvious field of tech, but for all STEM studies in order to get the most out of learning.

"Look around your own school or nearby school districts and determine your expert teachers in digital fabrication and run with the training! Reach out to local sign companies, fabrication companies, art institutes and software companies for experts in digital fabrication to help train your staff in this maker movement!" the article said.

Read the full story here. Share your STEM news with us in the comments below or by emailing editor[at][educationworld.com.

Compiled by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

08/04/2015

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