Gearing up for STEM in the classroom! Tips and Tricks for getting started!
I've been chatting with some personal teacher friends lately who all seem to share one thing in common. They want to start STEM in their classroom but feel completely overwhelmed with ALL THE THINGS and don't know how to get started. I will admit, it can seem daunting. HOWEVER, I'm here today to show you just how easy it can be to get going! And I mean easy like setting everything up in less than an hour!
First, think about WHERE you want to set up your STEM/STEAM area. If you already have cabinet space, place your boxes or bins there. I found this AMAZING shoe rack at Walmart for around $20 and knew instantly that I needed it for my STEM boxes. It took me about 10 minutes to assemble.
While shopping at Walmart, I grabbed some plastic shoe box bins with lids. I found a 10 pack for around $8. I printed these FREE STEM LABELS from Pocket of Preschool. I love that they are real photos and print 8 to a page. She also includes an editable version of the labels so you can add your own.
One reason teachers are hesitant to start STEM in their classroom is partly due to the fact that they don't have all the materials. You can minimize the stress of that by having your parents collect and donate the items!! Grab these EDITABLE STEM Parent Donation Cards HERE or click the photo below.
You can display your new STEM shelf for your students right away with a "Coming Soon" sign. Explain that you will all work together to collect items to fill the bins. The anticipation of starting STEM in the classroom might even motivate your students to collect the materials EVEN FASTER!
During your materials collection time frame, you can really focus on the details. When will students handle the boxes? What are your expectations? I highly recommend these TASK CARDS from Brooke Brown A.K.A Teach Outside the Box A.K.A The Stem Queen! Task Cards give your students a focus such as building landforms, landmarks, and seasonal structures. She also made these amazing MAKER MATS which are perfect for adding to your Makerspace/STEM/STEAM area.
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