Paper No. 8
Presentation Time: 10:45 AM


BRAME, Roderic I., Center for Innovation, All Saints' Academy, 5001 Florida 540, Winter Haven, FL 33880 and NICHOLS, Bryan, Education, University of South Florida Lakeland, 3433 Winter Lake Road, Lakeland, FL 33803,

Establishing STEM pipelines to STEM careers is dependent on having highly qualified teachers. The next generation of STEM innovators needs teachers prepared with sufficient pedagogical content knowledge and ability to guide discovery and problem based learning. The National Science Board recommends: building a motivated public, high quality teachers, collaboration and communication, and providing teachers world-class resources.

The ASAP program, funded by the Helios Foundation, provides 12 graduate credits in STEM education; collaboration between and integration of math, science, and technology; motivating instruction for inquiry and innovative solutions; and grant writing skills for resources. Curriculum and content is aligned with Common Core and Next Generation Sunshine State Standards for math and science, which is earth science. ASAP program encourages and supports innovation and higher order thinking; providing technology through NXT robotics and programming to help the teachers become comfortable integrating technology into their classroom.

The final and likely most important element is building language literacy. 26% of 8th graders are below basic reading level (NAEP). Half of the low scoring students come from low-income families so; we decided that it would be most beneficial if we target Title 1 schools. Our region intersects with the 5th poorest region in the US. Add in an ELL population which grew by more than 30% in 2010 and you have students who can learn math and science but have difficulty reading and understanding the test.

The ASAP program employs best practices in language acquisition and literacy strategies, which are implemented and integrated throughout the ASAP program. Integrating STEM and literacy strategies will provide teachers who can help raise proficiency scores in math, science, and reading at the same time. More importantly STEM literacy will be improved increasing the opportunities for kids to pursue careers in STEM and build STEM capacity.