It’s a sobering fact: U.S. kids are falling behind in math and science education – and badly.
COMPUTER EXPLORERS is on the front lines to help solve the problem. Our Houston Texas-based technology education franchise does it with an innovative and creative business model that gets children excited about science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) subjects that can seem intimidating.
The stakes are clearly high, both for individual school children and U.S. competitiveness. U.S. students rank 25th in math and 21st in science skills internationally, according to a recent Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development report. In September, the Obama Administration announced expansion of the “Education to Innovate” campaign that includes a national video game design competition for students in grades 5 through 8. The campaign aims to spur students’ interest in science, technology, engineering, and math, also known as STEM subjects.
Rebecca Parrent, who owns a COMPUTER EXPLORERS franchise in Denver, CO., is tackling the technology gap one child at a time. She wants elementary and middle school girls to learn technology in innovative and stimulating ways and recently integrated a computer technology curriculum into a summer camp for elementary school-aged girls. It wasn’t a dry academic experience for the girls; it was outrageously fun and interesting. In one course the girls built a house with LEGO kits and added sensors that switched on lights, opened doors and operated fans. Some of the younger girls made a robotics-based birthday cake with candles that lit up and played recorded songs on command. More sophisticated robots and video game programming followed.
“When things start lighting up and making noises it literally makes STEM subjects come to life,” Parrent said. “We’re not lecturing girls or making them memorize the way they do in the traditional classroom, we’re making it fun. They are not making cupcakes and dollhouses – they are learning basic programming and engineering skills.”
Demand for such training clearly exists. A recent Public Agenda survey found that 84 percent of Americans think the future holds a lot more jobs that require math and science skills. Nine out of 10 say studying advanced math and science is useful even for students who don’t pursue a science or math based career, in part because gives students an edge with respect to college opportunities.
A majority of parents surveyed said they want to see more emphasis on STEM topics at their children’s schools, especially basic engineering principles and computer programming. Yet schools struggle to buy up-to-date equipment and hire staff to use it.
That’s where COMPUTER EXPLORERS makes a difference. Franchisees and teachers reach over 25,000 students a week with technology education classes in schools, after care programs, summer camps and recreation centers. COMPUTER EXPLORERS provides state-of-the-art technology that schools often can’t afford, which keeps kids engaged with material that is relevant and interesting.
Interested in helping U.S. children meet their potential and launch a new generation of thinkers? Visit our Website or call me direct 800-531-5053!