THE FUTURE BEGINS WITH STEAM EDUCATION – THE SPECIALISTS OF THE FUTURE

“Education is our passport to the future since those who prepare for it today will own it tomorrow.” (Malcolm X )

The entire civilization is undergoing significant changes. We must modify the way we educate our children.

We know that the future will not be for those who know a lot (we are only a click away from knowing everything there is to know), but for those who are creative, who can work in a team, collaborate, and find solutions to increasingly complex problems as they arise, and who have developed their key competencies. Basic qualities include adaptability to change and the ability to learn throughout one’s life.

STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) education is the path to success.

STEAM education and the activities we’ve done to anchor us in the future are innovative because they aim to reach the one who is at the center of any educational approach – the student – now, according to the time we live in, by changing mentalities about how to approach the instructive-educational process. Teacher training, which, as J Piaget put it, “is the fundamental piece in the puzzle of education” and “in the picture of education and teaching, we will not find any difficulty that does not lead to teacher training,” is a critical component. Our teacher education is critical for the modernization of the educational system and society in general.

Why STEAM education is important…

Problem-solving, creativity, innovation, enhanced resilience, autonomous work, teamwork, adaptation, and analytical thinking are all encouraged by STEM education. All of these are necessary life skills for children to achieve! STEM programs are tailored to the age of the learner in order to help them apply their knowledge in the actual world.

The educational goals of STEAM

STEAM education aims to prepare future generations for careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Innovation is founded on the ability to think critically and exceed expectations. Economic development relies heavily on innovation. Innovative thinkers are the ones who shake the world and have the power to change it. STEAM education programs are the first step in preparing today’s children to become tomorrow’s innovators and inventors.

The invention is far more than a “lightbulb” moment. Collaboration, the practical application of STEAM, creative problem solving, entrepreneurship, and the understanding that failure is a necessary part of the journey to success is all part of the invention mentality.

If this is the Present, what does the future hold?

If you had to choose one word to describe our current era, the word “digital” could come to mind. Almost everything worthwhile is done using a computer in the digital age. Binary numbers, which represent data as super-fast impulses, have largely superseded all previous forms of communication. This has far-reaching consequences for society, which must adjust to new and fast-changing working patterns.

It’s no surprise, then, that things are changing so quickly. There is every reason to believe that this rate of advancement will continue in the future, allowing for advances that we have yet to conceive.

AI is a hot topic right now, and it’s on its way to becoming a critical component of how things work in the future. AI apps abound, from self-driving cars to predictive text to chatbots, and we’ve only begun to scratch the surface.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is the name given to a worldwide network of interconnected devices. The Internet of Things has many applications, and society can use it for sophisticated tracking and diagnostics.

Digital technologies are here to stay. They are deeply ingrained in our culture, and the benefits they provide are far too numerous to be overlooked. The rate of change can accelerate as computer chips become smaller and more powerful.
As a result, the school and other organizations must consider how they will adapt to these changes. This isn’t a one-step procedure. We need to change the way we educate our children. New technologies and digital innovations must be recognized and passed on as they emerge.

STEAM GREEN

I believe that outdoor activities are extremely important, so we make certain that our students spend time outside every day. I’ve included a variety of activities to help us learn about the world around us. We experimented with using nature to teach other subjects like math and arithmetic, Romanian language and poetry, and the arts.

6 February 2022

We first met with a specialist at the Science Museum in the neighboring town to plan the activities. He spoke to us about his love of nature as well as his research and studies.
She informed us about Astrobiology, a new science attempting to explain the existence of life as we know it outside of our planet. To do so, scientists must combine traditional sciences like physics, chemistry, biology, and others to first define the concept of “living organism,” then define the conditions of life, and finally develop technology to study this organism. Then we realized we’d have to go to the Planetarium to better understand these ideas.

On April 26, 2022, the Technoworld Association invited us to participate in a series of activities at the Planetarium, which we accepted. The Universe is the eternal and infinite world. It`s everything that surrounds us, everything that exists, seen or not seen. The Universe is, for man, the greatest mystery of its existence that is waiting to be discovered. We will be able to conduct more research projects thanks to astrobiology. We’ll follow the science program and learn about the latest achievements in space exploration through multidisciplinary collaboration. Our activities will continue, with many other schools across the country already registering for World Space Week 2022.

I intend to involve students in interesting activities in order to make them want to discover the seen and less seen parts of the Universe. Astronomy is useful because the greatness of the phenomena they`re studying gives us the opportunity to understand nature better and to bring it closer to our needs. Responsive learning of the Universe is a huge opportunity for the students to enhance their general knowledge and their abilities. The Universe can become an interesting point in all the school subjects, even in the extracurricular ones, involving kids emotionally and changing mentalities.

On April 12, the 5th graders presented us with their 3D Tinkercad projects for building lunar shelters.

February-April

Throughout this time, I was conducting experiments. We cultivated plants in greenhouse conditions because it was cold outside, testing plant cultivation in extreme conditions and thinking about how we could sustain life on other planets. The children were upbeat and concluded that people had faced difficult times in the past and had survived. Nature is where we call home.

To save fossil fuels and protect the environment, we traveled by electric train and on foot. We looked at the flora and fauna, observing the close relationship between them and the impact humans can have on them. It had been days of exploration and discovery, observations, and connecting with nature and colleagues. It was the most interesting science, Romanian, music, and math lessons because I deepened my understanding of wildlife, sang, read directions and posters, and counted everything I could: seconds, children, animals, spring flowers, and so on. Students also learned how to use the PlantSnap and Magnifier & Microscope (Cozy) mobile applications. This is how the research and observations could continue.

“Whoever dares to teach others must never stop learning.” Dana, J. C.

February – April

This campaign is an excellent opportunity to convince us that a teacher must prepare for future interests and, in order to be useful to his students, he must first learn what suits them and their needs.

I participated as a trainer in two STEAM webinars (February-March) organized online and face to face, in which I presented the opportunities of a STEAM career to teachers from another region of my country, providing them with materials and conducting practical activities.

As a T4 Education Ambassador, I attended the Teacher Tech Summit on March 26-27 and learned about solutions for continuing to learn in good conditions from colleagues around the world as well as other education partners.

As a STEM Career Adviser, I attended two webinars where I learned about good practices from other European colleagues, as well as new ways to improve teaching and the support that stakeholders can provide.

The Science Education Conference was held from April 27 to April 30, 2022. We were inspired to participate by the theme. “Perspectives on STEAM education in the future. “Lessons from the crisis.” It was a fantastic opportunity to learn from experts. Under the title “Our Interesting STEAM Journey,” I was invited to present the two projects that were awarded by European Schoolnet.

STEAM CAREERS

1. HOW DO WE PREPARE CHILDREN TO BE INNOVATIVE?

STEAM  has been linked to early learning, according to studies. Children are better prepared for school and future careers if they learn these skills early on.
The best part about STEAM activities is that there are no correct or incorrect answers. Without a predetermined outcome, the child learns to think of solutions on his own.
This allows the fear of failure to be released. Children explore rather than memorize answers as they experiment and look for the correct answer.

2. THE JOBS OF THE FUTURE

According to a study released by the World Economic Forum in October 2020, in the next five years, approximately 85 million jobs will be replaced or partially replaced by a combination of humans and robots, while 97 million new jobs will be created. Work will be displayed throughout the world.
According to researchers, future trades and new types of jobs will be based on a combination of humans, robots, and algorithms. At the same time, they claim that change will result in better jobs and a better quality of life for all.

The students were given the option of choosing a STEAM career.

To stimulate their interest in these jobs, I posted some videos with today’s specialists. They learned what their job requires, what studies are needed, and what competencies they must acquire from them…

https://steamit.eun.org/researcher-eu-institution/

https://steamit.eun.org/systems-engineering-manager/

https://steamit.eun.org/researcher-agroecology/

https://steamit.eun.org/bioinformatician/

https://steamit.eun.org/data-scientist/

After seeing those videos and the TOP OF THE FUTURE SKILLS – after the World Economic Forum’s “Future of Jobs Survey 2020”, I concluded that thorough training in the fields of STEAM is required.

Analytical thinking and innovation
Active learning
Problem-solving
Critical thinking and analysis
Creativity, originality, and initiative
Leadership and social influence
Use of technology
Technological design and programming

Strength, stress tolerance, and flexibility
Reasoning and finding ideas
Emotional intelligence
User experience (EU)
Orientation on the services offered to the client
Systems analysis and evaluation
Persuasion and negotiation skills

3. THE RESCUERS

We decided with the students to get to know our rescuers, those who risked their lives for their fellow human beings: doctors, firefighters, and soldiers because this was a particularly difficult period of the pandemic. They learned a lot about first aid and how to save people’s lives in difficult situations. They went to the Military Unit to see the tools, equipment, and vehicles used by rescuers. Living 30 kilometers from the Ukrainian border was difficult because their families and these rescuers assisted the refugees. We learned how to protect ourselves from fires, floods, and earthquakes, as well as how to be “Friends of the Savior.” Then I did school applications, drew, and learned how to call 112 in an emergency. It was an interesting experience for the kids

4. MEETINGS WITH STEAM SPECIALISTS

To motivate the children, we invited two IT specialists, AI, who demonstrated what they do and how a typical day at their job goes.

Ana Maria Stancu, subtitled “Mother of Robots,” was the first to introduce us to the robots built at ROBO HUB and what everyone can do with them. She explained to the kids how they could become robot builders as well as what they would need to know.

The ESCU robot walking the Nero-robot robot captivated them.

Nero can go to the field to observe plant growth and announce any difficulties that come in real-time. Then they saw robot drones with a variety of functions, such as sanitizing hospitals or acting as hosts for various events. The fifth graders are already practicing for the “Creativity Olympics,” and the younger ones are convinced that they need to do more Math. Watch the videos of our meetings below:

Gabriel Anastasiu, a professor of computer science and robotics, was the second guest. He included instructional robots, as well as a professional 3D printer. We set out to familiarize pupils with 3D design, which will be crucial in the future. The pupils understood the purpose of this 3D design activity, which is also known as “3D design” and is sometimes the first step in the 3D printing process. Making a three-dimensional model, digital representation of objects, and subsequently 3D printing are all part of the 3D design technique. Various products, from the little medical prostheses to replacement components for various machines or robots, museum objects can be restored, and even industrial structures or space shelters can be created using this method. Through the 3D printing process, a talented designer and high-performance software can produce practically any object we can imagine. Look at our videos below:

5. STEAM EDUCATION AND WE

“Curiosity is the cure for boredom.” Curiosity has no medicine… ” Dorothy Parker

STEM education teaches students more than just science, technology, engineering, and math concepts. It encourages children to learn through scientific inquiry.
Hands-on learning with real-world applications aids in the development of a variety of 21st-century skill sets. With my husband and colleague Mihai Lungoci, I designed and implemented all of the electronics and robotics activities in the Optional course. His enthusiasm for electronics and robotics is passed on to his students.

With my fifth-grade students, I continued the series of discoveries and constructions. In optional activities, I taught electronics and robotics. I first built rovers, and cars with solar panels, using kits, using the “reverse engineering” principle. The school encouraged us to learn and provided us with the necessary materials. After that, we attempted to create other recyclable materials. Each prototype construction went through the design, construction, testing, and presentation phases. They provide us with a great deal of satisfaction and encourage us to keep going.

And because we want another generation to be interested in STEAM education, I began teaching coding to my youngest students. In addition, I developed the first educational robot. They are very curious about technology and want to learn more about it.

WHY IS EARLY STEAM EDUCATION REQUIRED?

Students learn to:
* to ask questions like a scientist
* to design like an inventor
* to build like an engineer
* to create as an artist
* to think like a mathematician…
PLAYING LIKE A CHILD

Thank you for all of your challenges. We appreciate your commitment to our education and the materials and examples of good practice you provide. We will ensure the Specialists of the Future by working together.

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About Lungoci Daniela

My name is Daniela Lungoci and I am an Elementary School teacher at Gymnasial School Ipotesti, Suceava. I enjoy turning my classroom into a place fit for learning, creating, experimenting and that’s why I am looking to provide my students with interesting and diverse learning experiences. Because I care about the future, I understood that change begins with the involvement of the teachers and of the community. I enthusiastically participated in international ERASMUS+ training courses, in the 35th ``Project Science`` Workshop, organised by the European Schoolnet, in Astronomy and Robotics courses organised by ESA and ROSA in the Netherlands and Belgium. I won the contest organised by the Leiden University (Space Awareness 2017) and a I receveid Excellence Space Science School Quality Label I subsequently got a telescope for the students at my school . I wrote two projects about space on eTwinning, in which I collaborated with a large number of european and asian teachers. Both received the ``European Quality Label``, and the second project ``3,2,1 Let’s go through the Universe with Paxi`` was awarded in the Ukraine and in Armenia by eTwinning. Last year, I participated with 2 projects in the ``Meet and Code`` activities...

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