How can we prepare students to be thoughtful and skilled problem solvers ready for careers of the future? The students in our K–8 classrooms today will have career opportunities that we cannot even imagine!
While we may not exactly know what those jobs will be, there is a strong possibility they will be related to STEM disciplines. All students need to be introduced to STEM experiences at an early age to build the foundation they will need for future careers. Most careers will require people to think critically and creatively, to collaborate with others, and to solve real-world problems.
AVID STEM Connections™ draws upon multiple processes to develop students’ problem-solving skills.
Design thinking serves as the foundation of AVID STEM Connections. As teachers guide their students through the design thinking process, they utilize components of the engineering design process, computational thinking, and research and analysis skills across standards of content areas.
AVID STEM Connections thoughtfully weaves relational capacity and the concept of equity for all students throughout lessons, intentionally introducing career connections to broaden students’ awareness about their future possibilities.
About This Experience
Prepares students to be lifelong problem solvers and critical thinkers
AVID STEM Connections helps students develop their skills as universal problem solvers in any academic discipline, field of study, or real-world challenge. Lessons are based on the 5E instructional model. This model shifts the instruction to a student-centered approach while moving systematically through five intentional phases: engage, explore, explain, elaborate, and evaluate.
Lessons are designed in accordance to national standards: Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), Common Core State Standards (CCSS), and International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE).
AVID STEM Connection Outcomes
- Develop problem-solving skills
- Introduce STEM-career awareness to elementary and middle school students
- Build STEM literacy through
- Multidisciplinary activities
- Multimodal instruction
- Standards-based connections
- Foster discovery, exploration, and curiosity
What makes AVID STEM Connections Special?
- Design thinking as a cross-disciplinary instrumental approach to problem solving
- Inclusion of social and emotional learning (SEL) and future-ready skills
- Integration of AVID’s Writing, Inquiry, Collaboration, Organization, and Reading (WICOR®) strategies
- Learning experiences integrating STEM disciplines across content areas
- Scaffolded lessons for teachers new to STEM, and for those who want to improve their STEM instruction
- Participation in AVID STEM Connections professional learning network (PLN)
Frequently Asked Questions
AVID STEM Connections offers students the chance to see the world through the lens of a STEM mindset as they communicate new ideas, think critically about real-world problems and concepts, and collaborate with peers to generate new creative and innovative solutions that are tied to content.
Each lesson found within AVID STEM Connections will clearly denote the standards that that lesson corresponds to from a common list of national standards.
AVID STEM Connections is targeted to match up with concepts and skills that are currently being taught in classrooms across the United States. Students will be exposed to new resources and strategies while applying the knowledge and skills gained in traditional classroom instruction in new, application-based ways.
The future-ready skills are embedded throughout the K–8 AVID STEM Connections within each lesson and mini-lesson.
There are many opportunities for collaboration within the lessons provided for each month. The lessons provide specific strategies educators can use in a face-to-face, virtual, or hybrid classroom with recommendations on digital tools that can be integrated to bring these strategies to life online.
Each lesson offers options for teaching remotely or teaching in person.
Students will hone their skills in Claims, Evidence, and Reasoning while assisting with reading comprehension skills including the ability to understand charts, graphs, and infographics. In addition, students will learn how to apply problem-solving strategies to writing research papers and practice their writing skills across multiple modalities.