“Design thinking” is a popular phrase in education circles and top companies are using it to develop new products and energize their staff. But what is it? As these designers explain, it’s about developing the skills to identify the source of problems correctly and then creating effective solutions centered around people’s needs. These skills are increasingly important in a knowledge-based economy as educators prepare students to succeed in the 21st century. And they make learning a whole lot more fun!
Science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) education is crucial to helping students find a path to success. Explore the importance of STEAM to the innovation economy as well as how to best to ensure equity in education with panelists Karen Flammer of UC San Diego, Dalouge Smith of the San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory, Heather Lattimer of the University of San Diego and Francisco Escobedo, the Superintendent of the Chula Vista Elementary School District. This engaging conversation kicks off the Sally Ride STEAM Series – honoring the legacy of Sally Ride and looking to the future of STEAM education.
It’s one thing to know a lot about your field of expertise, but as Beth Simon says, teaching others about what you know is not easy. Very few professors are actually taught how to be teachers, a failing that Beth identified early in her career in computer science. And as she tells Karen Flammer in this boisterous conversation, Simon disrupted the old “sage on the stage” formula and instead, offers interactive classes where students engage with each other to solve problems. Doesn’t that sound a whole lot more fun than your “Intro to Computers” class?
Check out her methods in The STEAM Channel’s latest program, Beth Simon – The Constellation: Sally Ride Science Conversations.
Join a group of middle schools students at Qualcomm’s Thinkabit Lab as they start to think about their future in the world of work and begin to discover jobs best suited for them. Qualcomm has developed tools to teach students about the kinds of jobs that exist and how to find jobs that are meaningful and exciting. Even if you’re not a middle school or high school student, this approach to facing the world of work may benefit you as you think about your career future.
The team at Qualcomm’s World of Work room invites students to determine their strengths, list their interests, and prioritize their core values. Through a series of guided questions, students “stand up” for qualities they might enjoy in a career, and “sit down” for qualities they wouldn’t. Perhaps working long hours on holidays and weekends is a “sit down” for you. If so, knowing that early on could prevent a long road towards an ultimately unsatisfying career.
Outside the lab, students are encouraged to keep their eyes open and ask questions. When they see people enjoying their careers, ask them why. What makes a job meaningful for them? What qualities do they need to succeed in those careers? And just as important, ask people what they like least about their careers. What’s the worst part of their jobs and what would they change if they could?
Through self-evaluation and exploration of multiple possibilities, students begin to honestly explore careers that could last them a lifetime.
Browse more programs on The STEAM Channel.
As she recalls her journey from a small town in California’s Central Valley to launching multi-million dollar companies in San Diego, she inspires some 300 high school girls gathered at the Salk Institute for a pep talk on pursuing careers in biotech.
And it’s not just her!
Janelle Ayres of Salk and three other smart and successful women follow with stories of their own paths to satisfying lives based on their love for science.