The new resource will help showcase the possibilities for in- and out-of-the-classroom educational collaborations within the STEM fields.
A group representing science teachers and another representing science and technology institutions are partnering on a new online journal dedicated to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education.
The new resource, Connected Science Learning, will help bridge STEM learning and education in and outside the classroom, according to its creators, the National Science Teachers Association and the Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC).
“This first-of-its-kind journal will inspire and inform a wide range of educators, whether they are in the K–12 science classroom, running an after-school program, or leading education efforts at a museum or technology center,” David Evans, NSTA executive director, said in a statement. “We want to help all educators take full advantage of unique and engaging learning opportunities that exist both inside and outside the classroom.”
The first issue of Connected Science Learning, which was released earlier this month, featured successful in- and out-of-school collaborations that foster science education. For example, one article focused on the benefits of a partnership between the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium in Omaha, Nebraska, and local school districts. The collaboration eventually resulted in a Zoo Academy program that offers high school students opportunities to gain hands-on experience working at the zoo.
An upcoming issue of Connected Science Learning to be released this fall will feature content on professional development.
Both NSTA and ASTC hope that the journal will reach those outside education, such as policy makers, foundations, and others with an influence on advancing STEM education. The groups also pointed to research that shows a high level of interest in a resource connecting the formal and informal learning opportunities within STEM fields of study.
“Professionals in science centers and museums are deeply connected with classroom teachers through wide-ranging professional activities,” Anthony Rock, ASTC president and CEO, said. “This journal will be a valuable new bridge.”