Integrating STEM into teaching and learning has never been more pertinent for schools across Australia. It can be quite an overwhelming task for those of us who don’t have much background knowledge, skills or confidence in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. For other educators, it can feel like they have reached a glass ceiling and need inspiration for even more ways to engage students in the concepts of STEM.
The good news, is that whether you’re a classroom teacher or a student, video is a brilliant tool to help you and your students to become STEM experts! If there’s one thing for sure, fostering student engagement in STEM depends on two things: inspiring teaching and inspiring resources.
Goals for STEM in Australia
Firstly, it is important to note the trajectory for STEM in Australian classrooms. The Australian Government has committed an additional $12 million to increase student enrolment of science, technology, engineering and mathematics subjects and to reinstate a focus on STEM across primary and secondary year groups nationwide.
STEM education targets the development of critical thinking, problem solving and creativity and communication skills, which have become increasingly necessary for current and future jobs across the nation. Using video to aid the implementation of STEM learning in schools, students are able to access a fountain of knowledge, information and exposure to the world around them. Furthermore, STEM education promotes a sense of curiousity in students, as they unveil new interests and become critical thinkers who question, challenge and problem solve issues presented in the new information they are exposed to.
As educators we are developing the next generation of STEM trailblazers.
The good news is that key areas appointed for national action, as highlighted by the Education Council in the National STEM School Education Strategy 2016-2026, can in fact be achieved with video:
- Increasing students STEM ability, engagement, participation and aspiration
- Increasing teacher capacity and STEM teaching quality
“How?” you ask.
Increase student STEM ability, engagement, participation and aspiration
Our role as teachers is to make learning science and mathematics engaging. Cue ‘video’, the learning tool and gateway to quality content and the real world.
To help students to draw connections in their learning of science and mathematics with the real-world, teachers across Australia have expressed their excitement for the ClickView TV Guide to access and capture the best free-to-air educational programmes that air every fortnight. Others have even dived in with the new ClickView 360° videos to completely immerse students in new worlds.
If anything, be sure to tap into the STEM-specific curriculum mapped resources available via ClickView, with programmes such as ‘Atom Bond’ for secondary students, or the ‘Bitesize Coding and Computing’ series for primary school students.
If your school has ClickView, you can access hundreds of video titles in science, mathematics and technology:
- ClickView Curriculum Library for Secondary Schools
- Clickview Curriculum Library for Primary Schools
- PLUS and VET Collections
Furthermore, teachers are using video as a tool to facilitate project-based and inquiry learning, to task students with the challenge of exploring and solving real world problems. Students can use video to document and reflect on their learning, easily done via the ClickView mobile apps. Students also share their video work samples and presentations with peers to share ideas, spark discussion and to orchestrate peer-to-peer feedback. ClickView aims to give students a quick and easy way of doing this.
ClickView STEM Trailblazer Top Tip
Utilising ClickView Interactive Videos as a tool for peer-to-peer feedback, students can engage with each other’s content and provide feedback in the form of comments or questions, to provoke deeper learning across STEM subject areas. Some ways that students may choose to add interactive feedback to videos include short answer questions, true or false questions, annotations and images. Once students have added a layer of interactive questions to a video using ClickView, sending it back to their peers and teachers unlocks an opportunity for feedback. This approach is sure to pull students from a surface level engagement with any science and maths lesson, to a level of deeper thinking and engagement with whichever STEM-related topic you are teaching.
ClickView STEM Trailblazer Top Tip #2
When recording student learning and final presentations:
- Allocate the role of ‘video recorder’ to your most energetic student. Ensure you include the video recorder when critiquing and questioning teams following their presentations.
- Have a spare camera battery fully charged at all times.
- When necessary, use a tripod to record better quality videos.
Increasing teacher capacity and STEM teaching quality
Become a STEM specialist with the help of video by accessing rich educational content. Start with the readily available ClickView Science lesson plans, and be sure to tap into the resources that Australian teachers have created along with ‘teachable moment content’ from the ClickView Exchange, in the form of news reports, relevant advertising content and current debates and films for literary study. On the ClickView Exchange, there are 12 Feature Channels that are hosted by teachers in STEM-related subject areas, especially science and maths.
Many schools are starting by creating a community of STEM learning. Cue, ClickView’s online video platform to easily help in facilitating this process:
- Using your own teacher Workspace, you can create, find and organise content that are other classes in your school are using relating to STEM.
- Using Playlists within ClickView, bundle up and share that content quickly and easily. What are your top picks? Email it, share it, embed it in your LMS or via Google Apps for Education.
Unveil the world around you with curated video content, record and capture learning experiences and be captivated by the wonders of STEM. Become STEM Trailblazers with your students for 2017 and beyond.
My visit to NASA in the United States with a group of Australian students.