Wednesday, March 31
3:15-3:30 PM
Room 8

Enhancing Learning Outcomes for Disadvantaged Children in Rural North Carolina: Incorporating Technology at a STEM Camp

Brief Paper (Live Presentation) ID: 58787
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    Linda Crane-Mitchell
    East Carolina University

Abstract: High quality, inquiry-based, hands-on opportunities for students in rural elementary and middle school classrooms of Eastern North Carolina are uncommon. Area school districts often use direct-instruction scripted methods of teaching thus at-risk children have difficulty making the connections between content areas which causes low performance in the areas of mathematics, reading, and science. Research suggests that less advantaged children need additional learning opportunities to understand and use STEM content areas (Bell & Beven, 2015). An integrated approach to learning has also been reported to be more effective (Ronis, 2007) and supported by the Next Generation Science Standards (2012). Inquiry-based curriculum using a STEAM (Science, Technology, English, Art, and Math) approach was developed and implemented in a summer camp for disadvantaged children based upon statistics provided by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) which indicated low test scores in the areas of mathematics, reading, and science with approximately two-thirds of school districts being non-proficient in both mathematics and reading. Core Standards were aligned to each activity that was developed. Children from the elementary school (grades 4-8) were the targeted population for the camp. Technology was used to enhance and measure learning outcomes. The STEM camp served approximately 150 students (N=150) over a three-year period. Results of the project will be shared.

Presider: Linda Crane-Mitchell, East Carolina University


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