It’s a regular day in a school with defined timetable where subjects are taught in isolation by different subject teachers. You attend a biology class, a chemistry class or a math class and the content seems disconnected to the students. They are studying the topics, attempt an assessment on the same and eventually forget the learning. How do you show to the students that all the content is integrated?
You brainstorm with your teachers who feel the same. They want learning to be deep and long lasting and ‘STEMAGIC‘ is born inspired by the STEM Discovery Week. An attempt to connect topics with each other through meaningful projects chosen by students. We discuss technology, discoveries around us with the students and ask them to research and create it. In the process, they understand the STEM principles around it and connect it to their regular school curriculum.
1000 students from Std. V to Std. XI participated in ‘STEMAGIC’. The excitement in them was palpable for a month of preparations as the topics were chosen by them, the team was created by them and they were the driving force. The teacher was the facilitator helping them with resources and valuable feedback from time to time so that they would achieve their goal.
The walls from the gate to the school were filled with project highlights inspiring parents and guests to visit the students projects in respective classrooms. The topics ranged from Science of baking, Extreme sounds where students showed sound therapy, musical fountains using sound and sound effects in movie background. They worked on cosmetology showing how Botox worked. Few students worked on health gadgets and demonstrated working of fit bit and gadgets which detected blood sugar, some worked on light and colour therapy wherein they demonstrated effects of light on human behaviour and agriculture.
The higher classes worked on planning a hazard prone city, latest techniques in automobiles; latest design in army, navy and air-force, amazing architecture which showcases scientific designs and engineering that withstood adverse times. Students showed the working of amusement rides, drones and robots. Some went deeper and created crime scenes and showed how forensic investigations are conducted.
The entrance foyer celebrated women in STEM and highlighted their achievements so as to sensitize students on gender inequality in STEM and stimulate more girls to join STEM and not drop it in Std. IX .
It was a huge success as parents, students and teachers felt a profound sense of accomplishment. In fact, next academic year the STEM Discovery Week is going to be celebrated for in November and open to neighbouring schools to participate and compete.
Truly, sometimes all it needs is right combination of passion and curiosity for students to fall in love with STEM concepts and teachers to rekindle their love for the subject.