S T E M
Indicator ST1.6 Narratives
ST1.6 The interdisciplinary problem-based curriculum includes a focus on real world applications
What were the areas of strength noted in the Self Assessment?
Among AGE’s best practices is that the curriculae are mapped to the Common Core Standards for Math and the Next Generation Science Standards for Science both of which have a focus on real world applications. The curriculum integrates learning across and beyond STEM disciplines. By integrating many disciplines into one project or assignments students learn to make connections and analyse their knowledge and content across many platforms because this is how real world scenarios are addressed. Students are therefore strongly encouraged to think from a real-world problem solving perspective, when addressing these assignments.
Fortnightly meetings are held between teachers that teach many disciplines. During this interaction, teachers determine and select assignments and case studies that not only cover a wide range of disciplines but also focuses on real world problems. One teacher will grade one aspect of an assignment while another teacher will assess a different aspect of the same assignment. The learning outcome is remarkable in that it enables students to think in many different angles rather than projecting a tunnel vision which was evident in traditional subject based assignments. They also learn to relate problems that they come across in everyday life to the subject content that they are learning at school.
The science fair is an assessment that demonstrates real world problem solving. Students are encouraged to solve real life problems using the scientific method. Often, open ended Math and technology problems are solved in class and at home to achieve the same objectives.
What actions are being implemented to sustain the areas of strength?
A curriculum team will be an asset in initiating and maintaining a strategy that involves independent and collaborative learning that is applicable in real world situations. Staff meetings are geared towards making the curriculum more interdisciplinary and current.
What were areas in need of improvement?
Although AGE is equipped with a rich and well rounded curriculum, it is strongly felt that we could certainly include more real world situation based problems and challenges. Students can be encouraged to observe and explore the everyday world around them more so that they may come to class with problems that they found with their own innovative ideas on how to solve them. Students must be further encouraged to approach problem solving in a systematic step by step design process.
What plans are being made to improve the areas of need?