One of the hardest things to teach in school is solving problems. I can not tell you how many kids – and parents – ask me, "How do I get an A?" My answer: "By thinking," which strangely confuses her. We talk about what that means-problem solving, critical analysis, logical reasoning-but it often sounds difficult to them-too hard. They want a simpler way.
Why is that?
Basically, it's because there are not enough educational opportunities that require these and those skills that usually rhyme with "math" or "science," which for many children is "just too complicated."
Enter STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
"I do not think that schools without coding and STEM get along – in Finland, the curriculum was coded from the first grade onwards, and it is not taught separately, but by thinking in different subjects." -Anneli Rautiainen, Head of Innovation Unit at the Finnish National Agency for education
Coding, robotics and experimentation – integral parts of STEM – provide students with the best possible start in the rest of their lives. They are a toolkit for life skills such as problem solving, coding and thinking. 93% of teachers (in America) believe that these kinds of thinking skills are crucial in K-12.
Nothing promotes these better than STEM. Properly done, STEM makes the confusing part of thinking fun. I have found a partner in my STEM projects. It means Ward's science.
Even after 144 years, Ward's Science continues to be a leading provider of a full range of science products, kits and resources for AP science, biology, chemistry, digital science, geoscience, physics and more for primary school students to high school (and beyond) – including makerspace environments. Ward's Science is known to its customers and industry as a complete solution for materials that support science subjects in the classroom. They not only provide project material, but also lesson plans, lesson plans, instructional videos, tips and tricks, personal help, and podcasts. They even offer interesting extras such as "How do I choose a 3D printer?", "How do I combine my makerspace with my curriculum?", And "How do I get funding for a robotics program?". The curricula are in line with NGSS, TEKS and other states, and many of the kits are officially licensed Science Olympiad, They even offer scholarships to support school science programs.
What I really like about Ward's science
With Ward's Science, you'll find easy-to-use, age-appropriate STEM resources, even if you're not sure what you want. The website is concise, easy to maneuver and easy to understand. You enter what you are looking for and get options. No advertising. No animations. Only satisfied.
Something Services that I did not expect and that would be hard to find in other stores – virtual or physical – are:
- Histology Services – Schools can send handkerchiefs to Ward's Science and quickly and professionally place them on slides
- Custom Geology Services – a collection of minerals and rocks tailored to the educational needs of educators
- Custom Kits – organize, label, package and ship materials exactly as a teacher needs for their lessons – all in one kit
- Supply of living (or perishable) materials that are shipped in time for use to keep them fresh and healthy
Customer service This not only includes troubleshooting help, but also access to scientists in the science lab from Ward's Science Spot via email, phone or video chat, who will be happy to help you with your decisions and projects, when ordering and help with questions.
Another feature that I like is called Ward's World, In this section of the web site, Ward's Science features spectacular projects that will inspire and delight students, such as "Halloween Fun with Chemical Reactions", "The Periodic Table of Sweets – A Chemistry Lesson Plan", "Physics of Fidgeting" ( for beginners) and middle school, "" 6 live specimens that are great pets in the classroom "and" A fun way to teach pH. " The activities and lesson plans are by subject (chemistry, biology, geology, physics and MINT), grade level, and resource type (activity, timetable or video).
Another amazing offer from Ward's Science is Resources for professional development. That depends on you Youtube channel With more videos than I could count on many scientific topics, such as 3D printers, probes, tarantulas, introductions to a variety of products, quantum dots, and more. Visit the Youtube channel for a complete listing.
For more information on the breadth of Ward's scientific offerings, visit the following links:
To give you an example of the types of products offered by Ward's Science, I have evaluated two aspects:
Learning Resources Botley ™, the coding robot, is a compact two-eyed block robot on wheels. The 77-piece classroom set includes Botley, the coding robot (no assembly required), startup instructions, programming tasks, a remote programmer, robotic arms, coding cards, obstacle course pieces, and all that teachers need to teach students the basics of early coding 5 -9. Botley ™ is ready to use, helping students master logic, critical thinking, and other STEM skills without the need for screen time-no app, tablet, or phone.
How to use it
Getting started is pretty easy. Unbox Botley the coding robot. Make sure that the AAA batteries in the remote control and in the robot are fresh and functioning. Lay out the coding cards the way the robot wishes: forward, backward, rotate, or any number of other commands. Then use the handset to program Botley to follow your program. Once the students have mastered simple moves, enable Botley's Object Detection feature to avoid objects in the path, trigger a loop command for repeated coding functions, and navigate through an obstacle course in black-line follow-up mode. Want more? In the included instructions you will find many ideas.
Overall, Botley is an easy-to-use, friendly robot that even speaks to children!
I admit, when I received this kit for the first time, I did not get the name –Crazy routes with muddy trails, I could not understand all these words until I unpacked the box and pulled out the pieces. Then I understood it: that was promising. If you've played games at home or in science lessons and used it as a ladder and insulator, that's the muddy part. If you plug circuits that light up or let motors or a few other things into the dough – that's the crazy part. With this relatively inexpensive kit, a wide age group of students are learning about seemingly complicated issues such as insulators, conductors, resistors, and parallel and series circuits.
This is immediately ready for use, so no soldering is required.
How to use it
The "Crazy Circuits With Squishy Circuits" kit contains six containers of colored Squishy dough (some conductive and some insulating) and a variety of Crazy Circuits chips. You do not have to do anything or buy anything else. Detailed instructions, project guides, educational resources, and videos are available online in Ward's scientific database. Crazy Circuits are compatible with LEGO ™ and similar brick building systems.
If you're wondering how mushy dough can conduct electricity, check out this 4-minute TED talk. Although the video shows how to do the dough, you do not have to do that. Ward's Science sends it as part of the kit. You simply connect the circuits, motors and conductors and let your creativity run free:
(embed) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5M3Dow20KlM (/ embed)
Ward's science does not immediately appear in a Google search for "STEM consumables." Bookmark this review and share it with other science teachers. The next time you look for supplies, you'll want to find Ward's Science. You can reach their social media platforms here:
Ask A Tech Teacher readers receive 15% off your order and free shipping with exclusive coupon code
The offer is only valid in the internet at wardsci.com, To activate the offer, use the coupon code at checkout. Offer expires on 31/11/19. Free shipping includes only standard ground shipping and excludes items shipped with dangerous goods. The usual dangerous goods shipping charges apply. Unless otherwise stated, contract discounts and special offers may not apply to items whose final price is $ 9 (ie, $ 6.99, $ 10.09, $ 129.99). The offer excludes Somso models due to custom productions. This offer is not valid for all Triumph Board products. Promotional discounts can not be combined with other offers, discounts, contracts or promotions. For more information, see wardsci.com/terms, Selected articles may be or contain chemicals, living materials or hazardous materials and may only be purchased by educational institutions. Sign up to buy restricted items wardsci.com with your full web profile or create a new full web profile with your school's shipping account number here. With a full profile, you can also pay with orders, get tax exemptions, contract prices (if applicable), and other advanced features. You do not know your shipping account number or are not sure what it is? We can help. E-mail [email protected] or click Chat on the profile registration page. A Ward research associate will help you identify your shipping account number or apply for a new one.)
-While receiving these products for review, my opinions are my own.
Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 years. She is the publisher of over a hundred technical resources, including a Syllabus for K-12 technology. K-8 keyboard syllabus, K-8 Digital Citizenship Curriculum, She is Associate Professor of Technology, Master Teacher, Webmaster for four blogs and Amazon Vine Voice, CSTA consultant, freelance technical journalist, author of NEA today and author of the tech thriller, Hunting a sub and Twenty-four days, You will find their resources below Structured learning.
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