“Trace Minerals as Pillars of a Healthy Diet” is a three-session (in-class or online) Scientix LS which enables one to work on 4 different disciplines: Chemistry, Biology, Maths and English as a foreign language. There is one complimentary activity between the 2nd and the 3rd, which is designed as a non-class one.
What is it about?
The main real life question it raises is how to do conscious shopping with the aim of having a healthy, balanced diet. With the increasing rates of obesity, this is one of the most critical issues of today’s world.
What educational trends does it follow?
As one will see when the activity steps are unfolded, the LS proves to be a sound example of some of the important educational trends and all the 4C’s: peer-learning, collaborative learning, BYOD and edutainment, critical thinking, communication, collaboration, creativity.
The aim of the project was to enable students to gain an interdisciplinary perspective on rapid growths and changes in science, technology, engineering and mathematics and to realize their projects concretely. Thus, we wanted students without equal chance to closely follow growths and changes in technology, science and engineering. We organize STEM events with our teachers and students from 4 different countries, including Turkey, Croatia, Azerbaijan and Jordan, and 15 schools in our project that we have realized within the scope of the eTwinning project. In this project, we set on our teachers and students to get to know STEM events and we wanted their skills to develop. We applied the Engineering Design Process while doing STEM activities. So In this process, we applied the engineering design process in 5 stages as problem situation, possible solutions, the most suitable solution, model and testing.
In our project, we planned to organize a total of 6 STEM events, two of them in March, April and May. Our events consisted of daily life problems. STEM events in March were to design an earthquake-proof building and an earthquake-proof settling. Our STEM events in April were to design the tallest tower for the water treatment system and signaling problem. STEM events in May were to design the Recycle bag and Space rocket. While explaining the engineering design process, we gave an example of our tallest tower event in April below.
In Stem education, students integrate science and mathematics courses in the school with other courses. Students make engineering designs using technology. In these studies, students bring solutions to their daily problems in their lives. Through STEM education, students develop their problem-solving abilities.
Our eTwinning project with the participation of 8 school teachers and students from 4 different countries within the scope of ‘Step By Step STEM eTwinning project’; 2020-2021 academic year; 64 primary school students (Turkey), 40 Elementary School student (Slovakia), 32 Elementary School student (Italy), 25 The primary school student (Romania) was given STEM education.
In the project, sustainability citizenship issues were integrated into the STEM education provided. These STEM activities designed by students, it consists of applications related to creating their own solutions to environmental problems.
In the schools participating in the project, it consists of applications for students to create awareness by designing solutions to daily life problems and to produce their own solutions to environmental problems.
2 – AIMS OF STEM EDUCATION
the requirements of the century have led countries to change their policies in areas such as science, technology, politics, economics and education. Countries now need qualified individuals who produce, question events from different windows. These individuals develop different educational approaches. It is very important that they integrate them into the country system. In fact, the STEM approach is one of the last examples of this worldwide (Karakaya, Avgin and Yilmaz, 2018A).
In other words, STEM is the focus of knowledge and skills belonging to the fields of Science-Technology-Engineering and mathematics on engineering design. It is an educational approach that aims to provide students with interdisciplinary cooperation, open communication, ethical values, problem solving skills using research, production and creativity. (Commandments and Korkmaz, 2016; Karakaya and others, 2018a).
The aim of this study is to raise awareness of the causes of environmental pollution by STEM activities of the students participating in the project. With this education; It is necessary to ensure that students both produce solutions to problems and to ensure that students regulate their lifestyle in order to reduce these problems in daily life.
HOW CAN START STEM EDUCATION?
At the first stage, the teachers who participated in the project received seminars on STEM projects and Scientix projects from Dr. Tunç Erdal Akdur, the scientist Coordinator of Turkey. After the seminar, teachers formed STEM teams in their schools. Teachers designed learning scenarios for the project.
Students who participated in the project learned about the problem in the STEM script. In each learning scenario, a solution to an environmental problem is sought. Scenarios for achievements in countries ‘ curricula 21.built according to Century Skills.
Students watched videos and animations for the event. After the videos they watched, the students created solution suggestions. In this way, students were able to discover the factors that cause problems. Students designed solutions and inventions for the problems they identified. Students from different countries came together and designed various products to raise awareness about environmental pollution. During the activities; students guided only within their needs; their products were evaluated. The STEM education process has been closely followed with the evaluations made.
Designed online webinars; students, engineers met. At the meeting, the engineers described their profession. Students asked what they were curious about the engineering professions. Thanks to the event, students became familiar with engineering professions.
The studies were added to the STEM School Label profiles of the schools. At the end of the studies, schools were eligible for the STEM School Label.
4. FINDINGS AND INTERPRETATIONS
According to data obtained from 151 primary school students from 4 countries, students participating in the activities. In the project draft have created solutions to the problems they have identified within the framework of the activities they have determined about their wishes. In the activities, it was observed that the solutions and inventions of the students were original and creative.https://stepbystepstem.blogspot.com/
It has been observed that students ‘ imagination and problem-solving abilities develop in the right proportion with these activities. Thanks to the activities, it has enabled students to both provide solutions to problems and regulate their lifestyle to reduce these problems in daily life.
It has been observed that students explore environmental pollution problems with STEM education they attend. In addition, it has been observed that the education in which students receive suggestions for solutions to the problems they have identified and designs for inventions is at the level of analysis.
By providing STEM education during primary school, it will give students the opportunity to both provide solutions to problems and regulate their lifestyle to reduce these problems in daily life.
REFERENCES eTwinning projects.: Nature Protectors Karakaya, F., Avgin, P. S. and Yilmaz, m. (2018a). Interest of Secondary School students in the professions of fentechnologyengineering-mathematics (FeTeMM). Ihlara Journal Of Educational Research, 3 (1), 36-53.
Commandment, B. and he is not afraid, d. (2016). FeTeMM awareness scale (FFO): validity and reliability study. Turkish Journal Of Science Education, 13 (2),61-76.
The very main reason for our decision to start our project blossomed following a brainstorming session in class. There is an ongoing construction of a huge opera house building which is visible from our school grounds. One day my students were watching the construction site in admiration, raving over the heavy-duty machinery, which at the time led me to think that I wouldn’t be able to get a better chance to introduce and turn such a concept into a STEM project so I decided to create the right environment for the idea to flourish.
Exact topic:The main idea of STEAM Learning Lab activity is to engage students in STEAM experiments based on food materials and their properties, in fun and stimulating way and in parallel το teach them responsible consumption and production in order to build sustainable society.
The project consists of the following three activities: 1st Activity: Food waste: a renewable energy source (biogas), 2nd Activity: GMOs Food VS Organic Food, 3rd Activity: Sustainability and Citizenship Tic- Tac – Toe Game (AI). These activities connect learning with real life and integrate the 4Cs skills which prompt students to think critically and creatively, to collaborate and communicate effectively.Students need these specific skills to fully participate in today’s global community, be able to share their thoughts, questions, ideas and solutions, to become active, responsible and engaged citizens.
Description of activities
1st Activity: Food waste: a renewable energy source (biogas) Aims: 1)experiment and discover the energy of food, 2)awareness of the 7th Sustainable Goal Development (Affordable and clean energy) Biogas has gained popularity in recent years as a “greener” fuel. Biogas is a type of biofuel naturally produced from the decomposition of organic matter. When this organic matter is exposed to an environment without oxygen they free a blend of gases. Students working in teams, get involved in a conceptual mapping activity learning about the energy of food and discuss the below infographic about biogas process.