A modern STEM education has to push beyond reading texts and taking notes.
Even watching demos of real-world science and engineering techniques is only the beginning: young learners who use the tools of design and making in the classroom gain an enormous head start in STEM.
Making learning concrete and tactile doesn’t only help students remember what they’ve learned: it helps them learn deeper and better.
“When students invent, they take ownership over an idea, then face real-world problems en route to making their idea come to life,” says Christa Flores in this excerpt of her book Making Science: Reimagining STEM Education in Middle School and Beyond.
Flores has been helping students achieve scientific literacy for years, and introducing design and making to her teaching processes has led to great strides in her students’ ability to learn, retain, and act on knowledge.
“Just like interacting with a well-designed museum exhibit, or setting stuff on fire in your backyard, school should be exploratory and joyful (but safe).”
Investigate Flores’s list of 5 ways in which design and making impacted her STEM education methods here.