I, Christine, had the opportunity to talk to Mr. Augustine regarding the classes I teach. I talked about getting the kids excited about science, technology and engineering - we blow things up, we instantly freeze things with liquid nitrogen, we program computer games and more. By the time a student leaves the class, they are excited to learn more, to do more, to be more. To instill a sense of passion in a child is to release the greatness they were born with. To not spoon-feed information, but rather get them to ask good, deep questions will help them learn to find their own answers and to prove to themselves what is true. "Because I, the teacher, said so" is NEVER a good answer. We need to find answers for ourselves. And by finding those answers, what we find more often are more questions.
After talking with me, Mr. Augustine said, "The class you teach sounds like exactly what is needed!" Coming from someone that has been in the industry for 60 years, that means a lot. But it means more to me when I see the "A-HA!" moments in a child's eyes when they have just proven their original hypothesis wrong and now know the truth. It means more to me when I have a parent tell me their child can't stop building a computer game (not playing...BUILDING/Creating/Programming!)
STEM education should not look like a student reading a science textbook and filling out a worksheet. It should be more than just making slime from a prescribed recipe. "Technology" should be deeper than learning how to write an essay in Microsoft Word for English class. It should be about instilling creative problems solving skills. To learn how to ask questions (you can't believe how hard this is). It should be about learning to collaborate with a team, not worrying about "cheating" off the person next to you.
Enter CTHEworld Academy...