This is the third in a series of posts on takeaways in facilitating STEM professional development for informal educators.
3. Informal educators understand the importance of STEM standards.
Informal educators understand and appreciate their role in extending science learning beyond the classroom. During our workshops, we often talked about standards and how they can guide STEM programming in the informal setting. Standards for all content areas were usually discussed. There was much discussion about the Next Generation Science Standards and the framework on which they were built.
Many informal educators are making efforts to align their STEM teaching to what is happening in the classroom, thus reinforcing the standards. They are willing to work with the classroom teacher to extend the scientific concepts and practices introduced during the school day. They view this extension as a means to help students more deeply realize how STEM permeates nearly everything in their lives, now and in the future.