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Austintown Local Schools expand STEM Program

October 24, 2018
The Town Crier

This is the seventh year for the Austintown Local Schools STEM Program, an interdisciplinary learning environment focusing on project based learning and 21st century skills. It began in 2012 with a seventh grade class of 25 students. Since then Austintown Schools has expanded their STEM program, adding a grade level each year with a recent completion of a full pathway for grades seven through 12. "Due to both student interest and continued success we decided to expand this educational option to our sixth grade students," said Danielle Chine, District STEM Instructional Coach.

They now offer a full STEM Program spanning grades six through 12, focusing on broad-based engineering with additional coursework available in computer science.

The expansion of sixth grade STEM at Austintown Middle School was a big step in expanding STEM programming to more students. This program, the only one of its kind in Mahoning County, has students engaged in hands-on, stimulating interdisciplinary projects for most of their school day. The core subjects such as math, science, social studies, and language arts are blended together within the STEM curriculum. Each STEM class consists of several course modules, which are strategically selected to align with the common core standards for each grade level. The new sixth grade class will learn STEM concepts such as 3D printing in the Design & Modeling module, coding in the Automation & Robotics module, and living systems in the Medical Detectives module. Sixth grade STEM students will also compete in the STEM Gravity Racing Challenge held at Derby Downs in Akron and participate in the launching of a weather balloon, a STEM tradition at Austintown Middle School.

Article Photos

Austintown students Ben Galvez, Zachary Zebosky, Preston Piersant, and Trevor Lordi prepare the robotics equipment in the STEM program.

The first class of STEM students graduated from Fitch last spring. Many of those students have enrolled in college majoring in computer information systems and game design and development while some students enrolled in skilled-trade programs. The STEM Program is focused on preparing students for a wide-range of careers and educational options post graduation.

"Our STEM Program and Computer Science courses are just some of the ways we ensure an inspiring education that strengthens and prepares students for unlimited future opportunities," Chine said. "This is the mission of Austintown Local Schools."

For more information on the STEM Program and other initiatives go to the Austintown Local Schools website (www.austintownschools.org) or email Danielle Chine at dchine@austintownschools.org.

 
 

 

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