Inspired by the Seedlings podcast and a wealth of other educators who generously share as well as collaborate with social media, “STEM seeds” is launching in March 2014 as a website by teachers, for teachers focused on sharing lesson ideas, links, and resources focused on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) teaching and STEM program support. I hope you will find the resources and ideas here helpful as you teach STEM and advocate for STEM in your school and community.
This collaborative space was originally envisioned as a spot where STEM teachers in Yukon, Oklahoma, could share lesson ideas. In 2011, Yukon Public Schools established a STEM program with fulltime, certified teachers teaching STEM for students in grades 4 and 5 at Independence Elementary School and Lakeview Elementary School. In 2012 the program was extended to Skyview Elementary School, one of seven K-3 schools in YPS. The STEM Program in Yukon Public Schools was recognized by Apple as an official “Apple Distinguished Program” for 2014 – 2016.
At a STEM workshop in February 2014, YPS STEM teachers discussed starting a website to share lesson ideas. Since a neighboring school district, Mustang Public Schools, just started an elementary STEM program in 2013-14 at Canyon Ridge Intermediate and Horizon Intermediate, we discussed the possibility of creating a shared site we could use to share lesson ideas and amplify STEM programs throughout Oklahoma.
In the summer of 2013, I discussed with Bob Sprankle (one of the founders of the Seedlings Podcast and an elementary technology teacher in Wells, Maine) the possibility of collaborating with the STEM teacher at their school. Today, on March 1, 2014, Bob and I visited again about this and I shared the idea for a website and periodic podcast which would be dedicated to STEM lesson idea sharing and collaboration.
After asking for suggestions and input on a website domain name via Twitter, Deb White suggested something related to seeds or roots.
I’ll be setting up a Gravity Forms powered CONTRIBUTE form soon so (hopefully) STEM teachers in Yukon, Oklahoma, Mustang, Oklahoma, Wells, Maine, and elsewhere can start using this site to briefly share lesson ideas. I also hope to soon start co-hosting a periodic podcast (recorded as a live Google Hangout) for STEM seeds.
Please follow STEM seeds on Twitter (@STEMSeeds), like our Facebook page and follow us on Google+. We’ll cross-post announcements about upcoming shows as well as new posts to the website on each of those social media channels. If you’re a STEM teacher, I hope you’ll consider contributing and possibly being a guest on a STEM seeds show. Hopefully this website will serve as a constructive catalyst for STEM teachers and others interested in supporting STEM education around the world!
If you have feedback or suggestions, I’d love to hear it. Please share via comments and/or on social media.
– Wesley Fryer (@wfryer)