The Importance of Science
The Importance of Science and STEM Education
STEM and STEM education are widely recognized topics of interest for educators, parents, governments, and businesses globally. This is because success in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) is directly associated with other forms of success at many levels. STEM drives economies upwards. On an international level, STEM success is a common ingredient of strong and highly competitive nations. Consequently, most adults are interested in STEM and STEM education for one good reason or another – perhaps, most of all, parents of schoolchildren.
Out of 100 STEM occupations, 93% of them had salaries well above the national average. The average for STEM annual career salaries is $87,570, whereas the average for non-STEM jobs is roughly half that ($45,700)1, 2. Add to this, projections indicating substantial future growth in STEM jobs (13% increase in STEM jobs between 2017 and 2027, compared to 9% for non-STEM jobs)1, 3. Since 1990, employment in STEM fields has grown nationally by 79 percent, from 9.7 to 17.3 million4.
While we may care about STEM, how are our students actually doing in STEM subjects compared to their peers globally? Not very well. U.S. students placed 38th of seventy-one countries in mathematics, and only 24th in science on the Program for International Student Assessment (PIZA) exam5.
Although 48% of the 2.1 million 2016 high school graduates who took the ACT exam stated an interest in STEM majors and careers, only a quarter of the students who took the test (26 %) met or surpassed the ACT College Readiness Benchmark in STEM6, 7. That is, most test-takers were not prepared by the U.S. PreK-12 education system to pursue university science courses without difficulty and/or remediation.
Taken together, the importance of STEM and the current state of STEM education in the U.S. must compel us to seriously focus on improving our approach to pre-college STEM education.
LabLearner science and STEM education programs are dedicated to improving pre-college STEM education across the U.S., as well as instilling an understanding and love of STEM in all students. LabLearner is a PreK-8, 100% hands-on science education system designed both for students that eventually go into one of the many STEM careers, as well as students that choose other career directions. LabLearner programs are committed to increasing critical thinking and problem-solving skills of all students and increasing the excitement and joy of understanding STEM throughout their lives.
LabLearner is a 100% research-based, hands-on system of PreK-8 science education that includes a fully equipped in-school laboratory, complete curriculum including all assessments, on-line parent and teacher resources, and teacher professional development. Developed by Cognitive Learning Systems, in conjunction with practicing scientists and educators, LabLearner incorporates the latest in brain research and classroom practice into a program that teaches students science in a way they can truly understand and enjoy. Students in the LabLearner Program engage in hands-on experiments performed in a laboratory setting as well as in lessons integrated into their classrooms. Experiments and classroom lessons use metacognitive tools that prompt students to use numerous learning and thinking strategies.