Finding breakthroughs for students to grow is a huge success in the world of education. At Maxwell Elementary School in Lincoln, NE, one student transformed from an aggressive and unmotivated student to a goop-making, volcano-creating, chemical-testing scientist thanks to new Science Learning Stations made possible by a grant from the Grow Rural Education program.
Hands-to-Mind STEM Breakthroughs
Sponsored by the Monsanto Fund, a philanthropic arm of Bayer, the Grow Rural Education program helped the elementary school purchase new labs, equipment and resources for STEM classes with the funding.
But, it’s not just this one student. The impact of implementing new technologies for learning STEM in elementary schools is much more far-reaching. When surveyed, students at the school indicated a much higher interest in science and enjoyed the hands-on lessons. Students’ science grades also improved through tests and lab reports. The program has even impacted science teachers by providing them with new resources to improve teaching strategies and techniques.
Benefits of STEM in Elementary Schools
Advancements in science, technology, engineering and mathematics are growing rapidly, leading to a steady increase in occupations within these fields. The education system in America has to keep pace with these advancements in order to prepare children for successful futures with exciting, innovative career opportunities. And with grants for rural schools from America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education program, that’s exactly what schools like Maxwell Elementary are doing!
Introducing STEM in elementary school curriculum is particularly important. Developing foundational habits for STEM learning in early education introduces young, developing minds to creative problem solving, scientific linear thinking and inventiveness. Hands-on activities like the new Science Learning Stations at Maxwell Elementary help to foster a child’s love of STEM learning by making it a fun, interactive process.
Because of the Grow Rural Education program, the school has been able to increase interest in STEM fields and promoting STEM literacy for all Maxwell students. The program awards approximately $2.3 million in STEM grants to public school districts annually with the goal of helping schools like Maxwell develop strong STEM curriculum and learning opportunities for their students. From helping visually and hearing impaired students learn about landforms at a school in Idaho to infusing modern technologies and collaboration into student learning in a school district in South Dakota, farmers’ nominations have enabled learning opportunities to students all over the country.