Science, Technology, Engineering, Math (STEM)

Science Technology Engineering and Math (S.T.E.M)

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Ki Charter is about offering choices in conjunction with the standard curriculum.  A non-negotiable for the founders was a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) lab. We are the first residential care school district in the United States to offer a fully equipped PITSCO elementary, middle and high school STEM curriculum.

PITSCO math and science based labs are not separate courses for students at Ki Charter, rather a supplement to their math and science curriculum.  Many students at Ki Charter are kinesthetic, manipulative, and tactile learners.  These students receive the theory portion in the classroom, and then translate their learning to practice in the lab.  This is very important to Ki Charter to have students really understand and recognize the true importance of learning, by putting it into practice.


The programs have been tailored to meet the needs of our students who often show high mobility, and the STEM lab will provide exploration into jobs such as engineering, biology, mathematics, and information technology.  The lab provides engaging, hands-on projects designed to engage students in academic content incorporated into real-world scenarios.  Each module includes curriculum, environment, computers, and professional development.  When students experience this curriculum, they develop 21st century skills, including life and career skills; information, media, and technology skills; critical thinking skills; communication skills; and collaboration skills.  All of these are integrated into the curriculum in meaningful, relevant ways that reinforce the validity of the skills to the students; students use the skills in such a way that they can apply them in other situations outside of the curriculum experience.

Academic Relevance
Curriculum components are individually aligned to academic standards, and naturally, the TEKS are a foundation of the alignment process.  Alignments and correlation reports ensure that students are experiencing valid, standards-based curriculum while engaging in project-based learning.

Learning Opportunities
Each experiential unit in a PITSCO Education environment includes real world, hands-on tasks and project-based activities.  Students experience hundreds of tasks in the program, and these tasks expose students to various workplace readiness skill levels.  The program prepares students to use important skills and begins demonstrating how to transfer those skills from one environment to another.

Curriculum Elements
Modules are
multimedia curricula reinforced with hands-on activities.  In addition to the computer-based curriculum, module workstations include required equipment, materials, reference texts, and supplies.  All modules are developed to address standards in multiple subject areas such as math, science, technology, and careers.  With this versatile cross-correlation in the content design, students gain additional knowledge in core subjects that broaden and strengthen their overall knowledge base beyond the focused content area.

Computer Equipment
A PITSCO Education lab typically requires a 2:1 student/computer ratio, and each program utilizes a teacher laptop, a laser printer, and a server to help facilitate classroom instruction.

Environment
The lab environment includes workstations, storage units, chairs, cabinets, rectangular tables, and a teacher desk.


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