Meet our Partners: FCR-STEM
We’re proud to introduce you to a vital part of our team – the amazing team of teachers and content area experts who develop and research our curriculum. The Florida Center for Research in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (FCR-STEM) boasts a remarkable amount of talent and experience in education and we’re so glad to be able to work with them to create our kits. Here’s some background on what they do and how we work together to create meaningful 3D printing solutions for your K-12 classrooms.
[FCR-STEM] is a multidisciplinary research center created within the Learning Systems Institute (LSI) at Florida State University in 2007 and currently has more than 100 faculty and staff members.
The center’s mission is to help improve STEM teaching and learning in grades K-12 and prepare students for higher education and STEM careers in the 21st century.
Through impacts on teacher knowledge and classroom practice, FCR–STEM strives to:
- Improve student achievement in STEM fields.
- Narrow student achievement gaps in STEM fields.
- Increase student pursuit of STEM fields.
These broad goals are addressed primarily through high-quality research, teacher professional development, and the development of innovative resources and software tools to support instruction aligned with curriculum standards.
Among FCR–STEM’s major accomplishments is the development of CPALMS, a web-based system of over 12,000 high-quality instructional resources for teachers and students vetted by content and teacher experts — plus 15 online software applications to support teachers’ planning, instruction, and professional development. CPALMS attracts an average of approximately 60,000 teachers and students on a daily basis.
Since its inception, the center has been awarded more than 50 grants for research and development projects, worked with thousands of Florida’s principals and teachers, and developed products that have been used by millions of people.
Learn more about FCR-STEM here.
Our 3D modeler, Hannah Olson, works alongside the team at FSU to develop the kits and curriculum. Together, they come up with the ideas and designs for the kit and develop comprehensive learning solutions that specifically address the curriculum standards through problem-based hands-on learning experiences for the students. We’ll be posting more about the idea development process in tomorrow’s post.
One of the other notable features the partnership with FCR-STEM offers is the chance to pilot our kits in actual classrooms around the state of Florida. The curriculum team has relationships with local schools around the state and brings the kits into the classrooms to get direct teacher feedback on both the models and the lesson plans. In addition to piloting the kits, they have been used in a large-scale professional development and research project over the last three years and more than a thousand teachers have taken part in using and evaluating the kits. This rigorous testing and evaluation provides us the confidence that each of the kits work as intended by being an easy-to-use, effective teaching tool that really engages to the students. We are able to constantly improve the kits and curriculum based on that feedback and results. Learn more about the FCR-STEMLearn PD program here.
We’re proud to work with such smart, creative, and talented individuals.