Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics
In it's second year at John Oliver, the JO-STEM program aim is to bring hands-on learning and practice to the science and math classroom. The project based learning approach (PBL) lends itself to the teacher's personal phliosophy towards education. Jeff Spence and John Silver have been teaching for 20+ and have seen different "new curriculum" come and go. They believe that allowing students to choose relevant and interesting projects is key to student engagement. The math and science are then brought in to tell the background story of the concepts behind the) lends itself to the teacher's personal phliosophy towards education.
Jeff Spence and John Silver have been teaching for 20+ and have seen different "new curriculum" come and go. They believe that allowing students to choose relevant and interesting projects is key to student engagement. The math and science are then brought in to tell the background story of the concepts behind the things they build.
Students are grouped into their cohort and spend 4 classes together. The classes are fluid and ofter do not fit the traditional boundary. For example, if students are engaged in a building project, that time may flow over into the next class period. Also, if the math concept is taking longer to master, students may stay. As students mature, they will be given more freedom to make their own learning choices and to practice time management (as long as the learning occurs!). Teachers will still manage the learning outcomes and pacing.
In the grade 9 year, students are taught how to build. They are safely introduced to machines and appropriate use of materials. Students are introduced to managing their own math and science learning and given some freedom of time management. Students apply all areas of study to integrated projects.
In the grade 10 year, students refine their building skills and choices of materials. Students are now expected to take costing and purchasing into account. Math and science continue to be integrated where appropriate (while still covering ALL core curriculum). Planning 10 is integrated.
In the grade 11-12 years, a smaller group of students, who are self managed and self disciplined, will be selected for senior STEM. Under the guidance of the teachers, they will pursue projects of their own interest (within topic areas) and endeavor to solve larger, complex problems. These students will also spend time volunteering or working in their area of interest.
Grade 9 :: Math 9, Science 9, Electronics 10, Power Mechanics 10
Grade 10 :: Math 10, Science 10, Electronics 11, Planning 10
Grade 11/12 :: Foundations of Math 11/12, Physics 11/12, Engineering 11/12, IDS 11/12 (expected start : Sept 2017)
Potential Topic areas : Structures, Music, Flight, Robotics, Solar, Transportation, Health, Living together, ...