A committee from Lower Moreland School District recently spent the day looking at STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) in Colonial classrooms.
"I've always been impressed. I've seen some of your STEAM initiatives presented before, and what I really liked was that it's intentional — so the skills are developed in terms of critical thinking and design thinking outside of just science and math," said Julien Drennan, Director of Curriculum and Instruction for Lower Moreland School District. "The fact that you do a nice job reaching into different subject areas is something that's a good model for others."
The group visited Plymouth Whitemarsh High School, Colonial Middle School, Colonial Elementary School and Ridge Park Elementary School to tour the library Makerspaces in each building, as well as see the professional tools in the EDI (Entrepreneurship, Design and Innovation) lab at the high school. The tour included time for Colonial teachers to share what computer programming, engineering and science look like starting at the K-3 schools — and what the path looks like from there to the dual-enrollment, Advanced Placement, Honors and new International Baccalaureate Career Programme pathways at the high school.
"We've been strategically incorporating engineering and STEAM concepts into our classrooms for over a decade," said Maria Wileczek, the Colonial Curriculum Supervisor who led to the tour. "We start with coding in kindergarten and inquiry-based learning in science and other subject areas in our elementary schools. Beginning early helps to make sure that our students have a strong foundation in the skills and knowledge they need to be future ready. It also helps to build an interest in STEAM-related careers."
Colonial hosted a team from Upper Dublin School District last spring.