The Modern STEM

What is the Modern STEM Classroom?

It’s a great question and one that can truly transform how kids are learning and how they’re getting ready for great jobs in a modern economy.  The really good news for Alabamians is that we already have an answer to this.  These 8 practices define what work is like in  the modern economy.

Science &Engineering Practices

Learning science and engineering in a modern way is an exciting journey for young minds. Kids today are encouraged to be active participants rather than mere listeners in the classroom. They develop and use models to better understand complex concepts, get hands-on with data, and even construct things using equipment. These practices may not seem drastically different from traditional teaching methods, as they still involve asking questions, conducting investigations, and analyzing data. However, the modern twist lies in preparing students for the dynamic demands of a contemporary workforce. They learn how to communicate effectively, as this skill is crucial in today’s jobs. Arguing from evidence and working collaboratively with peers are essential, ensuring that they can make informed decisions and constructively engage in discussions. In a modern science and engineering classroom, learning is a vibrant, hands-on experience, setting the stage for a successful future in a rapidly evolving world.

Math Practices

The eight mathematical practices hold the key to preparing students for the demands of the modern workforce. Experiencing these practices enables young minds to make sense of problems and persevere in solving them, nurturing essential problem-solving skills. Reasoning abstractly and quantitatively encourages critical thinking, a crucial trait in the ever-evolving job market. Constructing viable arguments and critiquing the reasoning of others fosters communication and teamwork, vital for collaborative work environments. Modeling with mathematics and using tools strategically equip students with practical skills. Attention to precision ensures accuracy, while seeking and utilizing structural patterns enables efficiency. Expressing regularity in repeated reasoning teaches consistency. Alabama’s alignment of education with these practices, from K-12 and beyond, equips students with the skills they need to not only secure but also excel in a modern economy. These practices are a cornerstone for future workers, paving the way for fulfilling careers and economic success.