School Spotlight: Sacred Heart’s STEM Focus
Sacred Heart Catholic School in Robbinsdale is the first urban Catholic School in the archdiocese to implement the so-called C-STEM program. The program that merges faith and science promotes critical thinking in science, technology, engineering and math.
Sacred Heart staff implemented the C-stem program in 2015 with the goal of training all teachers in the school. The C-stem program stands for collaboration, critical thinking, creativity and communication. The curriculum is aimed at giving students hands-on experience.
You can see that in a special room dedicated to students learning STEM. Teachers renovated the room for Kindergarten through 5th grade students, which includes a LEGO wall. Students think they are playing, but they are learning.
“Legos is a way for students to create, design and build things using their imagination,” explained Sacred Heart Catholic School Principal Karen Bursey.
Older students started a new STEM program this year called STEMscopes, which is about getting the creative juices flowing. Students get instruction in science four times a week.
“There’s a lot of exploring going on in that hands-on piece,” says Angeline Petit, a science teacher. “There is not necessarily just one right way to do it. But if the way they did it didn’t work out, they have a chance to try again.”
The science lab is divided in eight sections. Students work in groups and sometimes on their own. The idea is to get students excited about science.
“Becoming engaged in science and seeing that science is all around and hopefully to really inspire them, said Petit.
The school received an $188,000 dollar grant from the Schulze Family Foundation so teachers could be stem certified through St. Catherine University.