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STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics! It is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in these four specific disciplines in an interdisciplinary and applied approach where academic concepts are coupled with real-world lessons.
What is STEM education?
Rather than teaching these four disciplines as separate and discrete subjects, STEM integrates them into a cohesive learning paradigm based on real-world applications. Students, thus, apply the subjects learned to the world around them. The next generation science is of high standards and designed to make students future-ready by giving them skills to comprehend and apply science in their day to day lives.
When did STEM education begin?
It all began in the United States of America where the STEM acronym was introduced in the year 2001 by the scientific administrators at the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF). American Biologist, Judith Ramaley introduced STEM as the career field in disciplines integrating knowledge and skills together.
There were reports on poorly Several reports on the poorly prepared workforce in the US-led to these disciplines to be integrated. To maintain US prosperity and to be able to compete in the global economy, the attention was focused on integrating and developing STEM to develop scientific competency and upgrade knowledge of existing students.
The STEM-focused curriculum has since traveled to countries like Australia, China, France, South Korea, Taiwan, and the United Kingdom namely with more and more new programs upcoming in these places.
Why STEM education is important?
The foundation of innovation lies in a dynamic, motivated and well-educated workforce which is equipped with STEM skills. The societal technology and scientific advancements require our children to be future-ready and thus, arises the need to become STEM literates.
Students need a strong foundation in the STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) to become successful in today’s information-driven age. STEM educates and empowers students with abilities to use creativity and critical thinking skills at work. In fact, STEM education actually benefits students irrespective of age or backgrounds.
Stem education is emerging as the need of the hour which helps students with a platform to learn and make the leap from users of technology to innovators of technology and thus, becoming more and more important.
What are the benefits of STEM education?
Despite making students learn quality content, they are failing to implement those learnings practically because the current education model is more exam and marks focused. STEM players, on the other hand, are more fascinated by technology and from a young age become tech-innovators and fill the gaps created by the current education system. STEM education is soaring thus in its popularity with more schools and colleges implementing STEM learning into their curriculum and reaping in on its benefits.
Here are a few benefits of STEM Education:
- STEM literates become creative thinkers in the future and are able to think of new ideas. The creative streak in these students helps them build new inventions in the digital space and they are more amenable to artificial intelligence. It is all in the mind after all, and if we can conceive it, we can also achieve it with STEM!
- STEM builds resilience, which is a must-have trait to succeed in these competitive times. It teaches students early in their life that it is okay to fail that it is ok to fail but not ok to quit trying. Embracing mistakes as a part of the learning process is an important value that STEM teaches. How else can geniuses build masterpieces without failing?
- STEM students are innovators and experiment. STEM education teaches us to take risks and experiment with things to achieve new possibilities. It encourages students to do away with fear and try new things every time while doing their learning activities.
- STEM encourages knowledge application, with skills taught which can be used in the real world. This becomes a great motivator for the students as they want to acquire more knowledge which can be used immediately to create a positive impact.
- STEM students are tech-savvy. The students get to learn about the power and potential of new technologies and also about innovation and its capacity. Students thus, learn to embrace new technologies as they proceed in their lives giving them upper hand amongst the remaining lot as they become increasingly tech-savvy.
- Students suffering from Attention Deficit disorder benefit from STEM and develop the ability to complete long, intricate tasks like computer programming or robot assembling. Hands-on activities and creative thinking are good for students with ADHD teaching them to concentrate, develop on their motor skills and channelizing their energies through innovative education and experiential learning.
Stem education is a relatively new term in the Indian Education sector. The future of STEM education in India is quite bright as it will help create critical thinkers, problem-solvers, and next-gen innovators. We need to introduce students to STEM subjects as early as in their elementary classes. It can help create a learning environment for them where kids are exposed to concepts based on science and technology.
At YouDo, we have a comprehensive range of resources to inculcate STEM learning concepts in children right from the preschool stage. Though in the nascent stages, the Indian education sector is seeing a lot of innovation in STEM. The future is surely here and now!