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Wondering how to incorporate science, technology, engineering, and math PLUS collaboration, critical thinking, problem solving, and digital literacy into the PreK-K curriculum? You can do it with project-based learning units and scaffolded activities through which young students design, create and use learning/play centers. The book presents 8 units, each broken down into 5 phases with specific guidelines, options for adjustments, and suggestions for parent support. This “learning by doing” approach is fun, and it allows learning to come naturally as children who are bubbling with different abilities, backgrounds, and ideas work together.
Reviewed By: M.A.Effron (Ohio)
STEM needs to be inquiry, problem based learning for kids. Just because an activity integrates more than one "genre" of learning does not make it STEM. These are just step by step science experiments. No different than has always been done. It is sad that a company like Teacher Created Resources would support a product like this. It is similar to all the "Common Core" aligned material out there that didn't really change to meet the new high standards of the Common Core (Evidence Based Close Reading and Deep Understanding of Number Sense and Real Life Problem Solving Skills in Math) - they just put new correlations on each lesson.
A note from Teacher Created Resources:
For many teachers, Science, Technology, and Engineering have not been high on the priority list in the past decade. The emphasis has been on reading and math. The TCR STEM series was developed to help teachers transition from “teaching to the test” to guiding students to think more critically, and learn-by-doing—important 21st century skills.
The emphasis on science activities in the 1-2 and 2-3 books was intentional. It is important to bring science back to all classrooms. Reading and math are integral to science. The goal of the series was to demonstrate how a STEM-focused approach could be worked into the curriculum by breaking activities down into manageable, step-by-step activities.
By adding the strong technology component to the Grades 2-3 book, it was our hope that teachers would feel more comfortable embracing STEM, especially those educators less comfortable “teaching” science and using technology as a tool to convey the data discovered.
Aligning CCSS standards to the state standards provided was not the driving force of the series. It was hoped that teachers would make use of the standards required by their districts and tailor their units accordingly.