12 STEM Resources for Teachers
According to the STEM (Science Technology, Engineering, and Math) Coalition, there are 26 million STEM jobs in the U.S., comprising 20% of all jobs. By 2022, there will be 9.2 million new STEM jobs in the U.S. Despite the need for these workers, only 45% and 30% of high school seniors are prepared for college-level math and science courses, respectively.
As the American K-12 system continues to look for ways to boost student interest and aptitude in STEM learning, technology is playing an increasingly pivotal role. Children who come to classrooms today have an inherent aptitude for technology, and educators should encourage that skill set with resources that integrate STEM learning. Where do teachers find resources to incorporate into their STEM instruction? The easiest place would be via the internet. To save you some time, we decided to compile a list of resources that provide teachers with the tools that they need to deliver quality STEM instruction to their students. Without further ado, here is our list.
- AU Stem Activities Guide – Interested in how you can help capture your students’ attention in the STEM subjects of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics? This guide features several STEM activities for the classroom, spanning elementary to high school. You’ll receive step-by-step plans, along with downloadable worksheets and ideas to expand the lessons. This guide will increase your knowledge of STEM teaching and learning, and in the process, make you a world-class STEM educator.
- CK-12 – This online resource helps students and teachers to improve elementary science learning by making personal education tools available. Learn more than 5,000 math and science topics at a speed that suits you. Math topics include arithmetic, measurement, algebra, geometry, probability, statistics, trigonometry, analysis, and calculus. Science subjects include geography, life science, physical science, biology, chemistry, and physics. Other subjects include SAT exam prep, engineering, technology, astronomy, English, and history.
- Crazy Plant Shop – This game uses the universal design for learning framework to enable students to learn about the model of inheritance and genetic replication. It uses fun made-up plants such as Chomplex (plants with big chompy teeth), Catcus (cactus cats), and Bunnyon (onion bunnies), and shows how they pass on dominant and recessive traits to their offspring. It is useful in science classrooms that include students of different ability levels.
- Birdbrain Science Digital Textbooks – This app works like an online science textbook written for multiple reading levels. The comprehensive text ensures that every student in the class understands what is being taught. Automatic feedback shows teachers and guardians the amount of progress made and how much work still needs to be done. The text focuses on vocabulary building and assimilation.
- Hi Nano – This is a scientific app for those who hate science! This game will help your students understand what sound is, what temperature is, what things are made of, how small atoms and molecules are, what gravity is, and how planets form. You can take them to beautiful planets and show them amazing things. You’ll have fun abducting different creatures and learn science while you’re at it. Textbooks are boring, words are vague, but a game is an unforgettable experience. Help your kids love science!
- Labster – Labster connects the scientific and real-world for children by creating realistic and interactive lab scenarios. With immersive stories and an expansive 3-D world to explore, Labster gives your students a risk-free environment in which to experiment, play, and learn about science and technology virtually. This app presents an endless opportunity and education in science without the risk of anyone getting hurt in a lab, breaking equipment, or reacting to dangerous chemicals or other hazards.
- MATHia – Powered by cognitive science and research-proven pedagogical design, Carnegie Learning’s MATHia is so much more than math practice software. MATHia adjusts to your student’s learning needs, making nuanced instructional decisions, and providing an individualized learning path with formative assessments that are ongoing. As a mainstay in any core math curriculum, it provides differentiated learning that supports students who are having academic difficulties, while challenging students who are advanced.
- Mosa Mack – Mosa Mack allows elementary and middle school children to experiment with science without having to deal with the mess-ups. There are tiered lessons that have animated puzzles, mysteries, and questions. Let your students conduct experiments in a lab without needing any experience and without the possibility of someone getting injured.
- Mystery Science – Mystery Science is a tool designed to help elementary teachers provide free open-and-go lessons that foster students’ interest in science. It relies on in-depth science lesson plans that appeal to children’s natural curiosity. This app offers hands-on activities, highly visual experiences, and interactive lessons. The hands-on activities and video clues make it easy for teachers to replicate teaching scenarios. It is a blend of traditional lessons with Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).
- Prepmagic – Prepmagic offers science simulations for students; it allows teachers to design materials and tools to engage and enhance student learning. It provides materials that publishers and educators need to create responsive and insightful science content and assessments. It also helps them to make connections between scientific theories and real life.
- Redbird Mathematics – Redbird Mathematics provides students in grades K-7 with a personalized mathematics learning path by leveraging adaptive instruction, gamification, and digital project-based learning. This allows the platform to deliver precisely what each student needs to develop math fluency and aptitude. Every unit of Redbird Mathematics is integrated with a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) theme.
- WhiteBox Learning – Designed for students in grades 6-12, WhiteBox Learning is a complete standards-based STEM learning system. The curriculum is entirely web-based and allows students to design, test, analyze, revise, and simulate their experiments and model designs virtually before beginning to build. Students have the option of creating their designs using a model kit or via a 3-D printer. Teachers have tools to manage and monitor classrooms and student learning with data mining tools that allow them to track progress, manage results, and differentiate instruction.
The engagement of U.S. children in STEM education is the key to companies filling an estimated 9.2 million jobs in the industry by 2022. Time can only tell how many STEM careers will be created in the years that follow. However, it’s up to everyone to ensure that American students are prepared to compete for those spots. With the commitment of parents, teachers, and communities, we can offer a more inclusive and effective STEM education to children.
While improving STEM learning may seem like a lofty goal, teachers can accomplish this objective with access to high-quality resources, like the ones mentioned in this article. Teachers will also need to sharpen their STEM teaching skills. Thankfully, there are plenty of online master’s programs in STEM education that cater to busy teachers. It’s now up to us to make the changes necessary to realize a vision of better STEM education for American students.