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In the second of our Grovian Values Staff Blogs, Anna Kerr – Maths 2nd i/c and Year 7 Form Tutor – discusses how STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) brings the values of being Enterprising & Resourceful to life.
Grovian Values – Enterprising & Resourceful
In my second year here at the Grove I took a group of students to visit the biggest STEM fair in the country. We took a bus to Birmingham and delighted in all the wonders that the NEC could hold – from a clock powered by brussel sprouts to a silent disco; an NHS bus filled with experiments to a Land Rover showing off its capabilities on a custom made course. There were also the finalists of the Big Bang UK Young Scientists & Engineers Competition showing their inventions. It was a great day out for all and the students who are in year 13 now still talk about what they experienced, and many of them are hoping to study STEM subjects at university. What stuck with me about that day was those finalists – all young people who had seen a problem around them and developed a solution to that problem. Not just any old solution, cobbled together with bits of sticky tape and string but an innovative, well thought through and designed solution.
They were all enterprising and resourceful and I was inspired.
According to the Cambridge English dictionary, a person who is resourceful is skilled at solving problems and making decisions on their own. STEM education by its very nature produces resourceful students. But what is STEM….
STEM education integrates Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics into a cohesive learning model using real-life situations. It teaches student how these four subjects interact in the real world and how they work hand in hand, encouraging problem solving and decision making at its very heart. The interdisciplinary nature of STEM requires cooperation, communication and negotiation – skills that are greatly needed in this time of unrest.
The world needs engineers, STEM graduates and scientists but more importantly we need them to be enterprising and resourceful. The world’s population is rapidly increasing, putting more pressure on our already over-stretched resources and we need people that can solve these problems for the world.
At the Grove, STEM is celebrated in and out of the classroom, staff bring their knowledge and experience of the outside world to the curriculum to help expose the students to the real life situations where they may use an interdisciplinary approach. STEM club has just started at the Grove, following the success of the Robot club, and I am very excited about the ideas that the students are already coming up with for their classroom of the future, although an “automated excuse machine” is perhaps one we need to negotiate on!