To help educators provide a more collaborative, student-centered learning environment where ideas are accessible and engaging for all students, each lesson plan, called NSTA Daily Dos, and the curriculum storylines, called NSTA Units, are grounded in sense-making. Through this approach, students actively engage in a learning experience to make sense of phenomena in a way that aligns with their natural curiosity.
“Now more than ever, it is important for students to have access to high-quality learning experiences that expand their perspectives about science,” said Erika Shugart, Ph.D., executive director, NSTA. “Aerospace and rocketry provide unique opportunities for educators to engage students in STEM concepts. We are thrilled to collaborate with AIAA and Estes to provide educators with phenomena-driven, research-based instructional materials that spark students’ curiosity and motivate them to figure out for themselves why things happen and how the world works.”
In May, ExGen will unveil its first three Daily Dos developed for the middle school level. The NSTA Unit, designed for grades 6-8, will be available in October. ExGen will expand with additional resources for elementary and high school educators next year. Professional learning for educators will begin this fall with additional programs available in the future.
To ensure this program is widely accessible to as many students as possible, Estes will match the AIAA contribution to the program in the first year of launch through in-kind donations to participating schools and continue in all subsequent years.
“We wish to help all interested participants in the implementation of this curricula and break financial barriers as much as we are able,” said Nicole Bayeur, director of education, Estes Industries. “It is our top priority that education is just and equitable for all.”
In addition, Estes will manage a grant program to provide eligible Title 1 schools with funding to purchase the supplies needed to facilitate these lessons in the classroom. Details on how to apply will be announced later this year.
This news originally appeared online as a press release.
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