Summer STEM Institute helps teachers infuse learning with fun

More than five dozen HISD science, technology, engineering, and math teachers took part in a summer institute recently that was designed to help boost students’ math and science scores by incorporating more fun into their lessons.

The educators came from 23 HISD elementary and middle schools that received part of a TIF4 STEM grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The grant also provides resources such as equipment and technology, and participating teachers will receive additional training opportunities throughout the school year and share what they have learned with other faculty members at their campuses.

“Teachers are going to be developing different ways to use engineering and design, computer coding, robotics, art, and science and math in their classrooms,” said Susan LaForet, STEM teacher development specialist manager. “STEM is the future for these children, and we’re going to see more students going into STEM fields. We help our teachers see that it’s not something added to their curriculum, it can be seamlessly integrated into the curriculum.”

Fleming Middle School teacher Jessica Singh said the institute helped her make solid connections with other educators throughout the district.

“It’s the most amazing networking feeling,” she said. “I love that I can come here and meet these science and math teachers, and collaborate and synthesize with them and then have fun — because that’s how we make it fun for the kids.”

Participating schools are: