School moving to STEM-based teaching

(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

PLEASANT PLAINS, AR (KAIT) - The Midland School District in Pleasant Plains is about to completely change the way they teach students.

The school is moving to a STEM-based way of teaching for preschool through 12th grade.

STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Midland Superintendent Dewayne Wammack said this decision came as they were trying to find an identity for the school district.

They want what students are learning in the classroom to be applicable in real life.

So, the curriculum will stay the same, but the way it is taught will change.

There will be more projects and interdisciplinary activities.

Administrators want kids to learn how to think critically so they can go into whichever trade or field of study they choose.

"STEM will touch every student and most of the careers that are available today and even the ones that we don't know about are going to be STEM-related," said Karen Wells, Midland's library media specialist.

Wells said they have already seen a lot of support from the community for this project, including business leaders.

The school plans to take what those business owners say into account so they can prepare students for either the workforce or college.

"We want kids when they leave us to be able to compete with everybody out there for all the jobs for the 21st century that are coming along," Wammack said. "Provide them with that critical thinking skill and being able to solve problems and give them that step ahead. So, that's one of the things I'm excited about."

The transition is going to cost $321,000 in professional development to train all of the teachers over the next four years.

Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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