Wood Middle School Students Tapped to Showcase Learning Program

Courtesy photo  One of the Wood Middle School students demonstrates her mousetrap-powered vehicle she invented as part of the school’s STEAM program.

Wood Middle School Students Tapped to Showcase Learning Program


Alameda well represented at Anaheim STEM Symposium

Wood Middle School was selected to showcase its integrated and project-based learning Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) program at the fourth annual California STEM Symposium which began last Sunday in Anaheim, Calif. The symposium continued with a full slate of speakers, workshops and activities through Tuesday, Oct. 11. 

At the conference, teachers have the opportunity to share their collaborative experience and expertise with other educators from around the state. Wood Middle School teachers Pam Schaffer, Jessica Lucio, Matt Eding and Lindsay Shepard lead the STEAM program at Wood. 

In workshops, the teachers show how they work together across multiple subject areas to develop and implement a student-centered learning experience. In the program the learners research, design, build, test and make their thinking visible through the creation of mousetrap-powered race cars. 

Students develop critical-thinking and problem-solving skills as they work through the challenges their projects present to them. Learners work together in small teams and build their collaboration, communication and technology skills while creating websites documenting their process. 

They use mathematics to explain and explore scientific principles and utilize the “Studio Habits of Mind” and Engineering Design processes to transform their ideas into reality. English language and other arts are also part of the program.

The California STEM Symposium is a product of the Californians Dedicated to Education Foundation, in cooperation with State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson and the Commission on the Status of Women and Girls.

The symposium brings together thousands of teachers, administrators, students, higher education representatives, program providers, philanthropic representatives and industry representatives to engage them in STEM education by providing strategies and resources for program implementation.

The symposium has a special focus on increasing and supporting the participation of women and girls — as well as other underrepresented groups — in STEM fields. It also highlights leaders in classroom innovation from across the state and attracts student teams to showcase critical thinking, problem solving and teamwork.