What STEM Means and Why It Matters
The full form of STEM is disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. STEM education means learning of STEM subjects through an integrated approach; one that offers practical as well as relevant learning experiences.
Science is everywhere in the world around us. Technology is continuously increasing in all aspects of our lives. Engineering is the root of various buildings and monuments, but it also symbolizes the need for change as the global climate is changing and also ecological changes are taking place in our home. Mathematics has become like a necessity in our occupation, we need it for each activity.
When students are introduced to STEM and provided with opportunities to explore STEM related concepts, their passion grows and hopefully they end up with a job in the STEM field. A curriculum that is based on STEM has real life situations to help the student learn.
Why STEM Matters
It is estimated that between 2017 and 2027, the number of STEM jobs will grow by 13 percent, and for those of non-STEM jobs, the growth rate will be 9 percent, with positions in various fields like IT, engineering and advanced manufacturing.
STEM careers have higher earnings in comparison to non-STEM careers. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics workers play a vital role in the growth and stability of countries’ economies. And they are a fundamental component in helping them develop a better future. STEM education enhances critical thinking, increases scientific knowledge and empowers the coming generation of innovators. Innovation leads to new products and processes that support our economies. This innovation and scientific literacy depends on a strong knowledge base in STEM areas. It is clear that most of the jobs of the future will require a basic knowledge of math and science. Despite these entrancing facts, many schools do not have STEM-focused subjects.
Benefits of Studying STEM
STEM provides students with competencies that enable them to defeat personal challenges, pursue careers in technical fields such as networking or artificial intelligence, find solutions to extremely difficult problems, and analyze how the world works. For example, perseverance is important for success in almost any endeavor.
STEM helps children learn to cope with complex tasks and abstract ideas. Mathematics is always challenging. Programming is too. Children who overcome disappointments learn that great rewards lie on the other side of great challenges. Professionals in STEM fields know better to solve complex problems. Children who believe in themselves tend to do better in school. When self written code works, the situation is really satisfying. Building a robot, programming it to perform a task, and watching it happen is exciting. But while kids are having fun, they also build confidence. That confidence is important for test taking and academic achievement.
STEM students have the freedom to think critically, creatively and innovatively. Students have a safe environment where they are supposed to try again, if they fail. Emphasizes the value of failure as a learning opportunity and helps to accept mistakes. It gives children the confidence to set goals and take measurable steps to achieve them.
STEM teaches children the skills they need to do well in school, and not just in their STEM classes. Critical thinking is useful in reading, writing, and other subjects. STEM also engages students in productive hobbies. Most of the students who work in engineering fields began experimenting with computer programming or electronics as children.
How Can I Introduce My Child to STEM
Preparing today’s generation to become tomorrow’s innovators and inventors begins with STEM dynamic educational programs.
There are many education platforms that offer a value-added online class for their students in stem concepts. They have the best steam classes for kids that add value to every student’s education and help them understand the real-world problems.
Summer camps, after-school programs, and maker spaces provide opportunities to take traditional learning and twist it to prioritize practical experience and real-world application necessary to develop an innovative mind.
Virtual education is an easy and convenient way to start from home. Good programs make learning fun and help children develop widely applicable skills. For example, MasKodigo’s programming classes for elementary and middle school students begin with the fundamentals of the Scratch programming language. Scratch is a visual language that involves dragging small blocks of code across the screen and connecting them, but the concepts it uses apply to all languages.
Furthermore a study carried out in 2018 by Microsoft among more than 10,000 girls in Europe, identifies five recommendations to boost the interest of girls and adolescents in science and technology careers (STEM for its acronym in English):
- Give visibility to female references in science and technology . Girls who know women who develop their work in STEM show greater interest in this field than girls who do not have identified female characters.
- Generate interest. When girls and adolescents have extensive and relevant information about the benefits and impact of technology in people’s lives, their interest in STEM careers doubles.
- Provide real experiences. Girls who get involved in science or technology workshops or laboratories show a greater interest in developing their careers in this field.
- Support them . The percentage of girls interested in pursuing higher science and technology studies who receive support from their parents and teachers is double that of those who do not receive this support from their environment.
- Appropriate learning environment . Girls need a learning model in science and technology that encourages curiosity and experimentation and does not penalize error.
It is in us as parents and teachers to promote in our daughters and sons the possibility of focusing on new horizons, the world is no longer the same and whether we want to or not STEM is part of the future in the professional world, even if you are an artist or athlete, of somehow it will be related to these disciplines.
To sum up
We must keep up with the changing world. STEM education changes society by offering students a new mindset and valued skills in any profession. They let young people be flexible, look for patterns, find and evaluate information. Additionally, STEM education increases social awareness. Communicate global issues to the general public.