STEAM Programs Receive $15,000 Grant

STEAM Programs Receive $15,000 Grant from Girard Foundation
Posted on 10/22/2018
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The Chula Vista Elementary School District’s STEAM-based teaching and learning efforts have ramped up the last few years with the launch of Innovation Station at the Chula Vista Public Library, Energy Station currently at Muraoka Elementary, and makerspaces at nine schools across the District. The hands-on, experiential-learning programs received a big boost recently, thanks to a $15,000 grant award from the Girard Foundation.


The award provides funds for the District to provide professional development training to teachers to help facilitate standards-aligned STEAM projects and relevant career exploration in school makerspaces. Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) subjects challenge learners to communicate and think critically, creatively and collaboratively.


“We are very grateful for the Girard Foundation’s support in providing training for our teachers to maximize the use of school makerspaces and the student learning taking place in these innovative facilities. As our STEAM-based initiatives grow, we appreciate this opportunity to assist District teachers in developing engaging and interactive lessons to further students’ experience with STEAM-focused activities and the exploration of potential careers related to these fields,” said Michael Bruder, Resource Teacher, Innovation and Instruction.


Photo of makerspaceCVESD is seeing more and more schools creating a makerspace on their own campus in order for students to continue exploring careers and STEAM concepts at school sites daily, across grade levels. As more schools create them, professional development is essential to help teachers effectively use the makerspaces through hands-on projects and career exploration. For this grant project, professional development will consist of training classroom teachers on how to utilize John Holland’s Career Development Theory of Vocational Personalities, Next Generation Science Standards instruction centered around the Science and Engineering Practices, specifically the Engineering Design Process, and curriculum tools acquired specifically for CVESD’s growing school makerspaces.


In addition, through this grant-funded project, teachers will become familiar with learning activities related to the San Diego Workforce Partnership-identified priority sectors and receive support translating lesson plans into learning experiences to best utilize instructional time. This will enable students in a makerspace/classroom setting to utilize materials related to the Common Core State Standards and Next Generation Science Standards with efficiency and in an engaging format.


“With Innovation Station, Energy Station and the soon-to-be-opened Hydro Station, students in the Chula Vista Elementary School District will have lots of opportunities to increase their awareness of STEAM-based activities and potential careers in these growing industry sectors. We thank the Girard Foundation for its support and look forward to working with more community partners to maximize the potential of these innovative facilities, including our school’s makerspaces,” said Matthew Tessier, Ed.D., Assistant Superintendent of Innovation and Instruction.


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