District 196 is proud to offer a strong STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) education for students from kindergarten through grade 12. From our PreK-12 STEM Pathway to cocurricular classes there are many ways your child can experience science, technology, engineering and math in our schools.
What is STEM?
STEM education focuses on students’ engagement and skills from the earliest grades in science, math, engineering and technology. The ultimate goal is to grow students’ proficiency levels and demonstrate how these skills are used everyday in every subject, every class, and every career. A comprehensive STEM education includes a strong emphasis on hands on, experiential and inquiry based student experiences and activities.
PreK12 STEM Pathway in District 196
The district has established a K-12 pathway of STEM-focused magnet schools. The pathway begins at the elementary level with Cedar Park Elementary STEM School and Echo Park Elementary School of Leadership, Engineering and Technology, and continues at Valley Middle School of STEM and Apple Valley High. Learn more about our STEM-focused, magnet schools:
- Students use their innate ability to explore, experiment, problem solve and invent through engaged and sustained learning. The technology enhanced classrooms, environmentally conscious science and engineering labs, and outdoor learning areas provide opportunities for students to experience learning in active, real life environments. The inquiry based instructional program nurtures our students’ spirit of curiosity, questioning, reflection, and respect for evidence. Off site field studies expand our students’ knowledge of the natural world and develop a level of personal responsibility for environmental stewardship. Community partnerships support and extend the relevant and engaging educational environment of Cedar Park STEM.
- Combining academic excellence with nurturing learner qualities (persistence, curiosity, empathy) to help students become leaders who are developing skills in critical thinking, problem solving, and global communication. Engineering, the creative process of designing a solution to a human problem, engages children in purposeful hands on problem solving. Students use technology and digital media to gather, evaluate, and use information, to communicate and work collaboratively, and to support individual learning. Students gain the skills and knowledge to learn effectively and live productively in an increasingly global and digital society.
- Valley Middle School of STEM is a magnet school that embeds the study of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics into a collaborative and diverse learning environment. Students receive a comprehensive education with a strong emphasis on experiential, hands-on, and inquiry-based learning that mirrors the world around them. Through interactive lessons, teachers assist students in forming their identities as lifelong learners and problem solvers.
- Apple Valley High School will empower all students to graduate ready to be lifelong learners and problem solvers in a global community. Our mission is to prepare all students to be innovative and creative citizens. With an emphasis on academics, arts and athletics, we integrate STEM principles to provide opportunities for student growth. By integrating STEM principles within our academics, arts and athletics, we will prepare all our students to be innovative and creative citizens.
For questions or to learn more about STEM learning in District 196, please contact Paul Olson, teaching and learning coordinator for science, math, STEM and innovative programs, at 651-423-7911.