The Georgia Department of Education has awarded funding for a MSP grant proposal designed to increase teacher content knowledge and pedagogical ability by converging robotic activities with STEM learning in grades 3 – 8. A team of faculty from the University of Georgia College of Education and College of Engineering will work with Jackson County administers and teachers to create curriculum units incorporating robotics with the objective of improving student achievement and enhancing teacher content knowledge in mathematics and science.
The two-year RAFTSTEM project will provide teachers with rigorous and relevant opportunities to create powerful learning experiences for their students and prepare them with the necessary skills and understanding to excite students about STEM. If students are excited and motivated by the learning experiences, then they are more likely to participate and learn the STEM concepts and consider future STEM courses and careers. RAFTSTEM will not merely focus on robot assembly, which captures students’ interest, but on how they learn and apply scientific, technological, engineering and mathematical principles. Robotics will not be added as just another activity, but will be infused into the instructional process to enhance learning and increase student achievement in mathematics and science.