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9 Hidden Benefits of STEM Curriculum

The topics of science, technology, engineering, and math are referred to as STEM when talking about education, curriculum, and jobs. STEM is gaining awareness and importance amongst educators and parents. There is a large focus on providing quality STEM education to students starting at a young age to keep up with the increased need to fill STEM jobs around the country and world. Jobs in the STEM workforce are growing 20 percent faster than only other occupations. The rapidly increasing demand to fill these STEM jobs shows the increased importance of improving STEM literacy and skills as early as preschool and elementary school.

STEM education is essential to the continued success of our country’s innovation and progression. However, there is a personal benefit to each student who is interacting with STEM curriculum. STEM Sports® compiled a list of hidden benefits of implementing STEM curricula with your students or children. 

Scientific literacy

Scientific literacy is the ability to comprehend and analyze scientific processes, results, and applications. Around here, we call that cognition ignition! Hands-on interaction with the STEM curriculum gives students the exposure needed to gain comfort with science and understand it on a deeper level. This is helpful to them throughout their education as their coursework gets harder and in their future careers, regardless if it is STEM-related. 

Encourages technology literacy

STEM education introduces students to technology and its capabilities at an early age. Through constant exposure, students have an increased understanding of how it works, why it is important, and how it can be improved. Technology literacy in the younger generation is essential to the innovation of technology in the future.

Confidence that carries over to other subjects

Constant interaction with  STEM curriculum creates confidence around these subjects and translates over to other areas of a student’s education. Science, technology, engineering, and math are often the most difficult subjects for students to excel in. If they feel confident and comfortable in those courses, they will feel more self-assured in other subjects as well.

Gives students education application experience

STEM education is often hands-on, which allows students to interact with the curriculum on a deeper level. This method allows students to apply what they are learning to the lesson and the world around them. The ability to apply concepts outside of the classroom shows a higher level of curricula comprehension and benefits students as they enter the workforce.

Improves creative thinking and problem solving skills

 

Creative thinking and problem-solving skills are two 21st century skills that are essential to a child’s success in their education, personal lives, and future careers. During job interviews, employers are putting an emphasis on a candidate’s soft skills and 21st century learning skills. STEM education applies this to students and allows them to practice their skills through trial and error, critical thinking, and collaboration.

Foster leadership, communication, and teamwork skills

Gaining leadership skills is something that takes time, effort, and practice. STEM learning promotes a collaborative environment where students learn how to effectively work in groups. By learning key leadership skills at a young age, we are setting students up for success in their higher education and future careers.

While improving their leadership and teamwork skills, students are also working on their communication skills. These three skills often go hand-in-hand and can be found in most successful people. Children who have early exposure to these skills have the opportunity to practice them frequently and are more likely to have confidence in themselves in group settings and use them in the future.

Develops curiosity across subjects & the world around them

STEM curriculum improves students STEM literacy while introducing them to key areas in the real world that use the skills they are learning.Real world examples are but not limited to earth science, anatomy, and climatology. By creating an interest in STEM, we are introducing students to a variety of different topics that they can learn more about and specialize in. This leads to passions that can fuel a future career or potential lifelong hobby.

Helps with Social Emotional Learning (SEL)

Committee for Children® describes social emotional learning (SEL) as, “the process of developing the self-awareness, self-control, and interpersonal skills that are vital for school, work, and life success.” These skills are foundational to children, adults, and society as a whole. People with strong SEL skills are better equipped to deal with daily life, hardships, and their careers. 

STEM Education is an effective way to work with children on SEL skills at home or in the classroom. The collaborative nature of the curriculum puts students in the position to work in groups, work through difficult problems, and problem solve to find solutions.

Introduces STEM career options at an early age

A question we frequently ask our children is, “what do you want to be when you grow up?” Often, the child responds with a shoot for the stars answer or something entirely impossible. What if, by exposing them to STEM education at an early age, they started to think deeper about their answer? We call this cognition ignition! STEM lessons introduce students to possible careers they didn’t even know existed. In every STEM Sports® lesson, students are given STEM jobs in sports that use the skills they are learning. This gives students real-world examples of when STEM skills are used, which increases their attentiveness and retention throughout the lesson. It also gives students who are passionate about what they are learning a goal and career to strive for in the future. 

Here are a few example jobs that we have included in our lessons:

  • Team Dietician 
  • Golf Course Architect 
  • Sport Shoe Designer 
  • Replay Official 
  • Director of Athletic Facilities 

STEM Curriculum by STEM Sports

STEM Sports® offers K-8 supplemental curricula that use sports as a way to facilitate each lesson. Each curricula offering connects to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), Common Core State Standards (CCSS), and K-12 Physical Education Standards when applicable. This makes the curricula perfect for the classroom, afterschool programs, summer camps, and at-home learning. 

Each STEM Sports® curriculum kit is designed to promote hands-on learning and collaboration between students. This is done to increase student engagement, get them physically active, and improve curriculum and concept recall during tests and exams. If you are a parent or educator looking to implement a STEM curriculum in your classroom, click here to learn more about the STEM Sports® curricula. 

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