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The acronyms in the education field can be as hard to pick up on as military acronyms. I should know: I’m an educator and a military spouse, so I live in a constant state of Googling. I don’t think you want to hear about going TDY or PCSing, but I think you will be interested in learning more about STEAM, the core of Spectrum Station’s educational platform.
STEAM stands for:
Incorporating STEAM teaching philosophies into our classrooms means that we are introducing your children to how the facts, ideas, and discoveries of the world are all interrelated. Lessons are not lessons in the traditional sense of the word, and instead turn into opportunities to explore and create. These explorations are all related to the themes of the week, and incorporate a variety of skills in one activity. In this way of teaching, the lessons become fun, they flow naturally from one to the next, and children make connections. During January, “Winter Time” was one of our themes, so here’s a look at how STEAM unfolds in each classroom around winter explorations.
STEAM in Infant Classrooms
Teachers help babies feel something cold and then say words like “Brrrr” and “Cold”. Older babies may be shown how to stack round bean bags to build a snowman.
STEAM in Toddler Classrooms
During large group time teachers engage the children by singing “If You’re Happy and You Know It” then read the story, If It’s Snowy and You Know It, Clap Your Paws, by Kim Norton. As she reads, the teacher guides the children as they learn about winter animals and vocabulary related to cold weather, such as arctic and frosty.
STEAM in 3 Year Old Classrooms
In our Dramatic Play Area, the teachers may add supplies to build igloos, toy animals representing cold weather creatures, a cave for animals to hibernate, coats, mittens, and gloves to dress up for winter. Teachers will drop in on the area to model activities and ask questions that encourage the students to stretch the experience.
STEAM in Pre-K Classes
Students experiment with freezing different types of liquids and use pincers and magnifying glasses to examine and observe the products. The teacher guides the students in making predictions and observations. Afterwards they write a collaborative story to report the results, whereby each student contributes a sentence with guidance. Teacher has students sound out words as she writes them. The next day the students reread their report and discuss non-fiction books. Then each student writes their sentence on separate papers and illustrates their contribution. The book is then laminated and added to the library for students to read to each other.
I hope this glimpse inside our classroom makes you as excited for your child to learn through the STEAM approach. If you’d like to learn more, please visit steamedu.com.