User-Centered Approaches to Designing Solutions (9:00-9:50 AM)
This session supports participants to think differently about the needs of students, educators and education systems through the lens of design. The presenters will identify: what user-centered design is, their own experiences in incorporating user-centered design approaches, and the process of making their own organization more human-centered. The session frames the challenges that students and educators face as an opportunity to integrate design, and to make the process participatory by no longer designing for students but instead designing with them.
Understanding Potential Barriers to Diversity in STEM (10:00-10:50 AM)
Cary Funk, director of science and society research at Pew Research Center, will share insights from a nationally representative survey and a set of focus groups that offer an in-depth look at what Black and Hispanic Americans see as helping increase representation in STEM training programs, the influence of high school teachers as role models and recollections of STEM educational experiences. Discuss with fellow professionals how to apply this data to your action plan and remove some of the barriers to diversity in STEM. Dr. Jennie Ward-Robinson, CEO of the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine and former Co-Director at the Center for Studies on Africa and its Diaspora at Georgia State University, will serve as the discussant.
Sharing Stories of Women in STEM Professions (11:00AM – 12:30PM - 90 Minute Session)
This session will bring together women working in STEM professions to explore their STEM stories. Together they will discuss their challenges and successes in their education and careers, and explore how to inspire future generations of women in STEM.
Strategies to Develop Culturally Meaningful STEM Lessons (1:00-1:50PM)
It’s no secret that learning is not limited to what happens in an educational setting and students bring prior knowledge, acquired from their homes and communities, when they enter a learning environment. In this session, participants will learn about culturally relevant, responsive, and sustaining practices as promising approaches that captivate student interests and allow students to identify with their learning. Then they will observe the different strategies educators use to access students’ funds of knowledge as inspiration to create a plan to support students in making relevant and meaningful connections to learning in their own STEM classrooms/planned activities.
Hybrid AND Hands-On? Blending Strategies for STEM Instruction (2:00-2:50PM)
This session will reexamine blended and hybrid learning strategies and their innovations since the COVID-19 pandemic. Take a deep dive with a case study from “Smithsonian Science for North and South Carolina Classrooms”, a U.S. Department of Education-funded grant program. Although “new normal” may mean back to normal for some, this session will explore the strengths and opportunities of blended and hybrid learning that can be applied to more traditional educational settings.
Exploring How the Smithsonian is Defining the “A” in “STEAM”: Making STEM Accessible to All (3:00-3:50 PM) and Showcasing the “A” in STEAM: Smithsonian Resources Making STEM Education Accessible to All (4:00-4:50 PM)
The past decade of focus on STEM education has promised opportunities and careers for all students, but in reality, incredible inequities still exist in STEM education and STEM careers. The Smithsonian is taking a new approach to reaching students through STEAM education, where the “A” indicates “Access.” By engaging students through the history, art, and culture of the Smithsonian, they engage with new entry points to STEM education and STEM careers. The first half of this two-part session will be an overview of the approach that Smithsonian is taking, while the second half will be the opportunity to engage with resources from several different Smithsonian museums, research facilities, and education and outreach organizations.