Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, schools across the country have continued to do incredible work to ensure students receive the best education possible. To achieve this, many educators have had to adopt distance and hybrid-learning strategies for the first time. The process has not always been easy, but teachers have persevered and hundreds of thousands of children have reaped the benefits of their investment.
As we begin to move toward a new normal, it’s important to remember what strategies have opened new doors, benefited a diversity of learning styles and proven effective during this past academic year, and when appropriate, apply them moving forward.
Thanks to the experiences of our education partners who have implemented National Inventors Hall of Fame® (NIHF) education programs over the summer and throughout the year, we look forward to supporting the integration and evolution of learning practices post-pandemic.
Project-Based Learning Works
While project-based learning (PBL) might seem best suited for in-person learning, many schools have discovered this approach to be an effective way to provide activities that adapt to each student’s unique circumstances. Since not all children have reliable access to technology and the internet, providing project prompts that can be completed using common household items or upcycled materials is a great way to ensure that all students can participate. Especially when it comes to teaching STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects, PBL can demonstrate the real-world applications of concepts introduced in the classroom.
Personalization is Key
Personalized learning gives students the ability to explore at their own pace. While this is far from a new educational concept, many teachers have adopted this style after realizing that a fixed curriculum was not going to meet the needs of the moment. While a plethora of resources (including software) exist to help with personalization, educators can also use a more organic approach and meet with students individually to ask them about their goals, learning process and needs. By combining this approach with grade-appropriate subject material, teachers can assign lessons, activities and projects that leverage their students’ interests and passions.
Invention Education Catalyzes Creativity
When today’s children enter the workforce, not only will they likely compete for jobs that do not yet exist, they will be expected to solve problems that do not have straightforward solutions. With this in mind, all NIHF education programs are developed to allow students to explore and uncover solutions to real-world problems on their own. Using authentic invention education techniques inspired by some of the world’s greatest inventors (our NIHF Inductees), we are able to give educators the tools to inspire their students to innovate and make their mark on the world!
Read More About the Latest STEM Education Trends
To keep up to date with the latest trends in STEM learning, we invite you to check out our blog!