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Why is Alignment More Difficult with Next Generation Science Standards?

Nov 30, 2017 by Francis Vigeant

With the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) at or near the classroom implementation stage in most states, principals and teachers have come together to discuss their interpretations. Everyone involved is doing their best to understand where they need to be in September.

The problem facing all educators, early elementary through high school, is that few classrooms have ever taught science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) effectively. While "science classes" have been taught PK-12 for decades, many educators are now questioning if they've ever really taught students science, and if not, what effective STEM instruction is and what it looks like.

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Topics: NGSS

5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Ignore STEM Curriculum

Nov 29, 2017 by Maryellen deLacy

There’s been a lot of talk lately about Common Core and the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). The changes being discussed in curricula and educational standards involve major revisions to the way we teach. However, there are compelling reasons you shouldn’t ignore STEM curriculum that go beyond standards and assessments.

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Topics: STEM, interactive science, STEM schools

Girls and Women in STEM: Enhancing Equality and Opportunity

Nov 27, 2017 by Nicole Lanoue

The conversation about women in STEM is everywhere and growing exponentially in popularity, something seen in the sheer number of headlines written in the past few years. What you may not know, however, is that while women are better represented in the science and engineering workforce today than in the past, there are still gaps, especially in the engineering and computer sciences fields.

In grades K-12, a report by the National Girls Collaborative Project found that more girls than boys took advanced biology and pre-calculus classes, but male students were six times more likely to take engineering classes and slightly more likely to take calculus beyond pre-calc. After high school, the numbers drop even more dramatically.

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Topics: STEM

3 Strategies Science Classrooms Can Adopt From Innovation Companies

Nov 25, 2017 by Sara Goodman

Innovative companies like iRobot face many of the same challenges as teachers and school districts that are adopting and beginning to implement the Next Generation Science Standards.

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Topics: 3-dimensions, Next Generation Science Standards, Guest Innovator, Innovation, Implementing New Science Standards

Using STEM to Unlock the Potential of Rural Classrooms

Nov 24, 2017 by Nicole Lanoue

"When the going gets tough, the tough get going." It’s an old adage, but one that holds a lot of truth, at least when it comes to the youth in rural and tribal communities hit the hardest by our most recent economic downturn. This is our heartland: areas that have lost jobs, industry, and population over the past decade. It’s an old problem, but one that a STEM education can potentially help solve.

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Topics: STEM

Comeback Cities: How STEM can boost the economic recovery

Nov 22, 2017 by Nicole Lanoue

The economic recovery may be well underway, but for many American families—and many urban centers in our nation—the turnaround has been slow in coming, with a return to real prosperity not yet on the horizon. Lower unemployment rates and economic growth in some places give many people reasons for optimism. But the hard truth is that the American ideology that tells us anyone who works hard can achieve his or her economic potential seems far from reality these days.

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Topics: STEM

STEM that Competes with the Street

Nov 21, 2017 by Francis Vigeant

It’s been 52 years since Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech, and 50 long years since the march on Selma. But today, a half-century later, a quarter of African American and Latino Americans still live in poverty, with the economic—and educational—reality even dimmer for young black and Latino men.

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Topics: STEM

Are You Modeling a STEM Mindset?

Nov 20, 2017 by Francis Vigeant

After years of research, Stanford University psychologist Carol S. Dweck seems to have found a way you can develop grit and perseverance in your students: instill in them a "growth" mindset where they see challenges and mistakes as opportunities for real learning. Luckily there is already one subject that lends itself to the discovery, questioning, and inquiry that sparks this type of learning: STEM. 

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Topics: STEM

One Child Shares His Passion for STEM and Life

Nov 17, 2017 by Maryellen deLacy

Yassine is a KnowAtom student recently promoted to 6th grade in the urban schools of Lynn, Massachusetts. As winner of the Dr. George Laubner Award, he recently shared an essay about his life and STEM dreams at a 5th-grade promotion ceremony.

We are happy to be a part of inspiring and empowering all students who wish to follow their dreams.  As educators we are inspired by his wisdom, which helps us focus on what matters: teaching to transform lives.

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Topics: STEM

Where do NGSS and ELA Standards Intersect?

Nov 16, 2017 by Maryellen deLacy

The Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts & Literacy are the next generation of K–12 literacy standards.

In grades 6-12, Common Core State Standards require teachers of history/social studies, science, and technical subjects to use their content area expertise to help students and ELA teachers meet the particular challenges of reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language in their respective fields.

For this reason, there are a number of crossovers between the Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core ELA standards.

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Topics: NGSS, Next Generation Science Standards

Expanding the Maker Movement with STEM

Nov 14, 2017 by Sara Goodman

When Paul McCarthy’s son was born without fingers two years ago, McCarthy decided to find a solution on his own. He began to search for an inexpensive, functional prosthetic hand online and came across an internet video for a hand that could be made out of plastic by a three-dimensional printer, along with free instructions for how to print the hand out of plastic.

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Topics: STEM

How to Avoid a One-Size-Fits-All Approach to Professional Development

Nov 13, 2017 by Nicole Lanoue

To implement the Next Generation Science Standards well, prepare yourself for the major shifts in teaching and learning that are involved in your classroom, your building, and your district.

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Topics: NGSS, Professional Development, Implementing New Science Standards

Young Americans in STEM: From Recession to Optimism

Nov 10, 2017 by Sara Goodman

The Great Recession was tough on everyone, especially Generation Z now entering today's workforce.

So why should the next generation have reason to be optimistic about their futures?

The answer, for some, can be found in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education that empowers students to think critically and solve problems. 

A strong STEM education can transform students’ ability to create, evaluate, and analyze in any 

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Topics: STEM

Maximize Your Professional Development by Making It Ongoing

Nov 10, 2017 by Nicole Lanoue

The Next Generation Science Standards have changed the game by shifting the expectations of teaching and learning. Anytime somebody is being asked to change the way they do their job, you have to anticipate that that's not going to be an easy transition.

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Topics: 3-dimensions, productivity, Professional Development, Implementing New Science Standards

Developing Curriculum for the Next Generation Classroom

Nov 8, 2017 by Francis Vigeant

The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) are changing the K-12 science classroom. Memorizing facts and recalling demonstrations aren't enough under these new standards.

Classrooms now need to focus on engaging students in the practices of science and engineering, teaching students to analyze, evaluate, problem-solve, and create – facilitating the development of higher order thinking skills through STEM experiences.

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Topics: NGSS

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