February 2020 Newsletter
This Month’s Top Standards News and Trends
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Over the past few years, a new trend in teaching science and math has been evolving. Many schools already embrace the STEM philosophy (science, technology, engineering and math), but many are beginning to infuse STREAM curriculum into their academic plans. What is STREAM and how is it different than STEM?
STREAM stands for science, technology, reading/writing, engineering, art and math. But what does art, reading and writing have to do with math, engineering and science? Some educators have noticed that some of their students who are more artistically inclined feel left out from science and math curriculum, and the burdens of logical thinking for these students seem especially heavy. By incorporating these other subjects into typical STEM lesson plans, all students are benefitting from finding innovative ways to express their learning of math, science and engineering concepts.
A future scientist benefits from honing the skills needed to write a scientific paper. A future engineer may need creative skills to problem-solve a particular unexpected scenario they encounter. Likewise, the student who may excel at art and writing may be nervous to delve into math. They can find a common ground where their creative skills can be observed in concrete form, such as creating an art project that also uses math as a framework. The goal of STREAM is inclusivity as well as nurturing the talents and skills of all learners to become better suited to 21st century careers. Many publishers have begun to tackle this trend and we are seeing a jump in STREAM curriculum development as well as interest from school districts to find easy, accessible content that they can use in their classroom every day. EdGate has Subject Matter Experts who specialize in cross-curricular content alignment and are well versed in the concept of STREAM. We also enjoy "thinking outside the box" and can help you fit your lesson or activities into this ever-growing trend.
By: Lindsey Dumovich
Always a hot topic for us – new English Language Arts and Mathematics standards have been released for the State of Florida! The state's Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking standards (B.E.S.T.) were just adopted earlier in the month, February 12th. The state anticipates a three-year implementation timeline-so it is expected both ELA and math will be fully implemented by the 2022-2023 school year. ELA will be first with the state calling for districts to implement the K-2 standards during the 2021-2022 school year with the remainder for both subjects the following year. The state had several expectations for the new standards including eliminating the Common Core standards they adopted in 2010. With many states moving away from Common Core in name but still retaining the essence of Common Core we are particularly interested to see if the newly released standards bear any resemblance to the old. As we dig into the new standards we intend to do an analysis of both subjects to see if there are similarities that have been retained. Stay tuned to find out what we determine!
By: Jen Larson
While students work to graduate and enter the workforce it is often times hard to keep up with some of the most in-demand skills. As the job market evolves, students need to be able to learn skills that are not only hard-skills, a skill needed to complete a specific task, but also soft skills which revolve around behavior and cognitive abilities. In terms of educational standards these can be found in math, science and ELA standards as well as Social and Emotional skills which have recently been adapted in the classroom. All of these skills can make a difference in future success, regardless of the field students chose.
It should come as no surprise that the most in-demand hard skills companies are looking for are related to the tech industry. According to LinkedIn research, the top hard skill for 2020 is blockchain. Blockchain offers the ability to store, validate, authorize and move data across the internet and has emerged as a hot skill many industries are interested in. Top soft skills include creativity, persuasion and collaboration. New to the soft skill list this year is emotional intelligence which closely follows the SEL standards we see in the classroom today. This skill revolves around the ability to recognize emotions and use this information to fuel productivity.
If your company is looking to incorporate the most in-demand standards into your products, contact us for more details.
By: Sharla Schuller
Curriculum Grants and Funding
In this section of the EdGate Observer we point our clients to news about districts, states, etc. that may have available funding for curriculum.
This month we highlight three grants and awards:
- North Carolina schools receive $124K in state grants for Computer Science
- Virginia announces $1.3 million in computer-science grants
- Nevada Museum of Art receives $1.25m from Tesla to boost its arts education program
Updates to The EdGate Standards Repository include:
- Alaska Science (AD 2019) Grades K,1,2,3,4,5,6-8,9-12
- Arkansas World Languages K-12 (Revised 2018/Impl. 2020) World Languages (AD 2018) Grades K-12
- College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education Mathematics (AD 2013) add Grade Level Groupings A(K-1), B(2-3), C(4-5)
- Florida B.E.S.T. English Language Arts (AD 2020/Impl. 2021) Language Arts (AD 2020) Grades K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12
- Iowa Arts Education (AD 2017) Grades K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9-12
- Louisiana Mathematics (AD 2016/Updated 2017) Grades 5 & 6
- Maine Social Studies (AD 2019) Grades K,1,2,3,4,5,6-8,9-12
- Maryland Technology Education (AD 2016) add updated Technology Education - Grades 6-12
- Maryland Mathematics (AD 2019) Grades K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8-12
- Missouri Arts Education (AD 2019) Grades K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9-12
- Nevada Technology Education (AD 2019) Grades K,1,2,3,4,5,6-8,9-12
- South Carolina Technology Education (AD 2018) Grades 9-12
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