Cathedral Building

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Posts tagged stem

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Roominate – a new line of dollhouses for girls aims to spark interest in science, technology, and STEM rather than reinforcing the gender stereotypes of traditional toys. The startup comes from three female engineers

( Springwise)

Totally getting this for my niece in a few years.

Hmm, sister’s probably too old, what other little girls do I know?

…I would play with this and I’m turning 25 in just under a week.

(Source: explore-blog)

Filed under science stem

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AmoeBAND became a 2012 IDEA Award Finalist by innovating every possible aspect of the plaster (band aid).

The design revisions were:  

- Strategic cut-outs shape to fit fingers in such a way that it is easy to bend them and not disrupt the bandage.

- An intelligent dressing material allows you to regularly check wounds from the outside, without upsetting the healing process.“According to research, the when an infection of a wound is detected, the pH value is between 6.5 and 8.5. AmoeBAND’s indicator cross turns purple, alerting the user needs to change it immediately.

- Since the bandage material used exudes a leather-like feel, availability in different skin-tones helps it blend in, without overly highlighting the injury.

- The packaging has been redesigned to a matchbox style and includes Braille instructions.

Hat tip to designers Tay Pek-Khai, Hsu Hao-Ming, Tsai Cheng-Yu, Chen Kuei-Yuan, Chen Yi-Ting, Lai Jen-Hao, Ho Chia-Ying, Chen Ying-shan, Weng Yu-Ching and Chung Kuo-Ting

Part of STEM is the innovation behind the fields — asking students to build a better mouse-trap, encouraging the kinds of thought processes that can do everything from keeping juice fresh in a package without a refrigerator to sending people to the moon.

This is just such a perfect example of the everyday of this concept.  It’s a “Whoah…why didn’t I think of that?”  It’s a “Wow, HOW did they think of that?” Maybe for some of your students it will be a “Hey — I could totally do that!”

At any rate, it’s if nothing else a reminder that STEM isn’t just awesome, it’s awesomely practical and awesomely everywhere.

(via anightvaleintern)

Filed under education stem innovation

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Gates Foundation Grant Funds Development of MMOG (Massively Multiplayer Online Game) to Help Teach Math, Science

With the science field already relying on gamers to help them unlock some of the many puzzles of the universe, could video and computer games be the key to unlocking STEM for students? 

According to Klopfer, the game to be developed under this grant will be designed as a Massively Multiplayer Online Game (MMOG), a genre of online games in which many players’ avatars can interact and cooperate or compete directly in the same virtual world. “This genre of games is uniquely suited to teaching the nature of science inquiry,” he says, “because they provide collaborative, self-directed learning situations. Players take on the roles of scientists, engineers and mathematicians to explore and explain a robust virtual world.”
The game will be designed to align with the Common Core standards in mathematics and Next Generation Science Standards for high school students and will use innovative task-based assessment strategies embedded into the game, which provide unique opportunities for players to display mastery of the relevant topics and skills. This task-based assessment strategy will also provide teachers with targeted data that allows them to track the students’ progress and provide valuable just-in-time feedback.

But will this keep their attention, or will students be put off by the fact that their in-game performance is actually being potentially monitored by their calculus teacher?  Will this “robust virtual world” be able to provide experiences that are comparable enough to real-world activities to be transferable?  And what will the trash-talking sound like when it’s over who grabbed the last test tube, not the ammo?

Filed under education grants math mit philanthropy science stem video games gaming

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The variety at my bird feeder this year is lovely.

So, in the spirit of the season and the new EnirvoEd/Environmental Education tags, why not try adding a little Spring to your STEM?

Hold a found-objects-only bird feeder design contest/workshop in your classroom, your grade, or even your whole school - I don’t know about you, but I don’t get to practice that design component enough in my lesson planning, and it always seems fun.  Brainstorm what kinds of every day objects, some that we might throw in the trash rather than re-use or re-purpose, would be safe or unsafe to use. Start a class collection of found materials, or have students start their own collections to bring in to school and keep in a bag or container with their name on it; set up another container or bin where students can donate to an extra class supply of materials. 

Have students make blueprints/designs before they make their bird-feeders.  Let them test them along the way with birdseed to see if it will hold — but remember to so over the bird-seed container so nothing’s wasted if it doesn’t.

Have multiple means by which to judge:

  • How much seed does it hold?
  • How much or little material does it use?
  • How sturdy is it?  Will it fall apart before the end of the year?  Is it weather-hardy?
  • Is it safe for the birds?
  • Are there places for the birds to sit?

And, if you can go the good old experimental route:

  • How many birds does it attract?
  • How many different species?

Birding has been a pastime ever since fifth grade, when my teacher had a birdwatching station set up at his window and bird identification posters up on the walls.  It’s a wonderful and relatively simple way to bring the outside in.

Filed under teaching idea, education enviroed environmental education science nature birds stem