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To prepare for a 21st-century workforce, students across the country are developing skills in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). But STEM learning doesn’t only happen in the classroom; it also happens at home, at the library, in museums, and in afterschool and summer programs.
Informal settings like these are essential to STEM learning, yet members of the public don’t fully appreciate the value of STEM learning outside of school or understand the need to bridge—or connect—STEM learning that happens in different environments.
How can advocates make a stronger case for bridging STEM education across settings? A new report by the FrameWorks Institute offers insights. Supported by the Oath Foundation, the Heising-Simons Foundation, and the Bezos Family Foundation, the report is part of the Families Learning Across Boundaries (FamLAB) project, which is led by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center in partnership with FrameWorks, New York University, and Stanford University.
The report finds that advocates face numerous challenges in public thinking, such as:
These and other findings are summarized in “Crossing the Boundaries: Mapping the Gaps between Expert and Public Understandings of Bridging STEM Learning Environments.” This report compares expert and public thinking about this issue and offers advocates strategic advice to overcome challenges in public thinking.
Originally Published/ The Joan Ganz Cooney Center