STEM – What K-12 Skills are Needed for STEM Workforce?

MaryLee Helm


Education Week. (2017). Congressional Panel Asked: What K-12 Skills are Needed for STEM Workforce? Retrieved from

Lawmakers introduce a bill to provide more funding for the National Science Foundation to research STEM education in early childhood.

I am a proponent of STEM/STEAM education and am encouraged to see discussions happening at the government level to monetarily support programming in these fields of study.

STEAM by Design

Alicia Morales


Blog STEAM by Design retrieved from October, 2016.

Summary: Blog that collects stories from other schools/teachers who are implementing STEM projects. Blog connects reader to a series of links to other sites that focus on design, technology, science and content making. There are also links to other useful articles. Most of the examples are contributed by teachers working with young students, elementary level. Great show of creativity.

CO- Co-Teaching in Science and Mathematics

St Clair, Deb
Moorhead, T., & Grillo, K. (2013). Celebrating the reality of inclusive STEM
    education: Co-teaching in science and mathematics. TEACHING Exceptional
    Children, 45(4), 50-57. Retrieved from

Summary:  Co-teaching is described in detail in this article.  It is presented as a model to create a classroom that provides inclusion for Special Education students with having a General Education teacher and a Special Education teacher co-teach.
This article provides a very in-depth description of co-teaching.  There are numerous examples of how two teachers can co-teach, with an emphasis on “station teaching”.  The article provides examples that could be used immediately in a classroom.

Creating Hybrid Spaces for Exploration

Subramaniam, M. M., Ahn, J., Fleischmann, K. R., & Druin, A. (2012) Reimagining the role of school libraries in STEM education: Creating hybrid spaces for exploration. The Library Quarterly: Information, Community, Policy. 82(2) pp. 161-182.
Summary: This article examines the role of school libraries in STEM education from a sociocultural approach. The article stresses the need for school libraries to create hybrid spaces for STEM education and to maximize the roles school librarians have in that education. The authors propose that teachers and librarians take on an active role in STEM education through advising, collaboration, and technology. The authors further propose that librarians are in a unique position to create an environment for active participation for STEM activities which will further aid students in creating a STEM identity.

Evaluation: Though focused on STEM education, the takeaways from this article really stress basic elements of teacher-librarianship and library space. They stress libraries being active learning commons, collaboration with teachers and librarians advising students on resources and technology to provide transformative experiences for learning. 

STEM and the school library: A marriage that makes sense

Hoff, Jane
Collins, C. (2016, April 29). STEM and the school library: A marriage that makes sense. Retrieved from
Summary:  This article discusses the potentially successful role school libraries and their media programs can have in STEM and STEAM programs.  School libraries and media labs, which are often combined in the school environment, are natural settings for exploration and discovery, and often have the technological provisions necessary for students to flourish in STEM pursuits.  While school librarians already play a variety of roles, providing students and educators a central place for STEM supportive opportunities may prove to be one of the most important.
Review:  It might seem obvious that the modern school library would serve as a central exploratory source for STEM and STEAM programs, but in my experience, I have the least amount of inquiry for use of the library facilities from the science and math departments in my middle school.  The author suggests a program put on by the school librarian called STEM talks that provide STEM related topics for discussion and consideration by students and teachers alike.  This reminds me of the popular platform TED talks, where expert speakers give short talks on a variety of subjects that serve as a jumping off point for continued discussions.  I can imagine a similar platform is used in the STEM talks, but the topics center around science, technology, engineering and math.  This would likely be most useful in schools where the STEM programs are already up and running, or where the STEM programs are needing a boost to gain momentum.  I would love to see more STEM explorations in my library, and think starting a STEM talks program might be the way to go.