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The Vision for STEAM and the Next Generation of Science in PVSD


STEAM will be an integral part of the TK-8th grade PVSD curriculum, exciting and engaging students in learning that prepares them for high school and provides teachers the resources necessary to integrate science, technology, engineering and math across all disciplines.

Mission Statement

PVSD provides students a collaborative, technological and innovative structure for deep scientific and mathematical literacy, reinforcing effective communication skills in an intentional integration of real-world problem solving into multi-disciplinary experiences.

Why STEAM and what does it look like with the Next Generation of Science in PVSD?

The STEAM acronym was first coined by the National Science Foundation in the early 1990s. The term STEAM applied to any policy, event, curriculum, or education program dealing with Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, but mainly focused on Science and Mathematics. The importance of integrating Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics is quickly becoming a priority in K-12 education and at colleges and universities in both undergraduate and graduate programs. STEAM education is evolving into an integrative curriculum aimed at preparing students for the challenges of the 21st century. An integrative, applications-based STEM education program prepares our students to become creative and innovative problem solvers, researchers, engineers, and designers.

In PVSD, STEAM is integrated into classroom instruction in every grade. STEAM instruction is most evident in Science with the introduction of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) having an explicit strand for engineering. STEAM is also evident math courses that bring concepts into practice and application. Project Based Learning (PBL) allows teachers to incorporate multiple subjects, including the components of STEM, into student learning.

Using an interdisciplinary approach, the authentic learning of science/STEAM is meshed with hands-on, real world applications to kid-centered projects with a research-based design. Integrated STEAM will develop critical thinking, problem solving, and stimulate creativity, all of which is tied to good teaching that will ignite passion in students for learning.

The idea of integrating academic subjects with real world, student centered activities is something that the Ormondale staff has been working on for years. The STEAM Fund a Need and our Project-Based Learning (PBL) training created a new STEAM Lab and a better understanding of what it means to design and implement STEM and Project Based activities that help to create 21st Century Learners. The teachers at Ormondale are collaborating with their grade level teams and our STEAM teacher to integrate STEAM and PBL into the students daily lives, so that you can see STEAM and PBL activities and new learning on a weekly basis. You will see students doing these activities in the classroom, in the STEM lab, in the Science Lab, outside of the class walls, and at home.

At Corte Madera, purposeful activities, tied to Project Based Learning, link to the Common Core State Standards in Math and English Language Arts, tied directly to the Next Generation Science Standards. STEAM will be dynamic, innovative, engaging and fun for students. Integrated STEAM learning opportunities will prepare our students to develop skills necessary for a future/a world we do not know. 

Teamwork, collaboration, critical thinking, communication and risk taking are skills our students need to be successful in the future. STEAM provides these skills, along with a focus on learning and creativity, which are also necessary for student success. Infusion of STEAM into science classrooms will provide hands on projects for all students, creating a motivation for learning for all.

Next Generation of Science in PVSD


·      Implement the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in all grades to ensure PVSD introduces all students to the current approach to science education

·      Empower students to become innovators and technologically proficient problem solvers

·      Ensure that all students have access to the appropriate technology conducive to enhancing their learning experiences both in and outside the traditional classroom

·      Increase STEM experiences and support curricular and extra-curricular STEAM opportunities for students, including labs, maker spaces, and competitions

      Increase STEM experiences and support curricular and extra-curricular STEAM opportunities for students, including labs, maker spaces, and competitions

·      Expand the resources and knowledge educators need to provide STEAM experiences to all students, along with support for knowledge and performance-based assessments

·      The PVSD approach to STEAM education will emphasize increasing access for girls, students with special needs, and underrepresented groups

·      Increase awareness of STEAM education through communication and collaboration with the community

·      Guide community understanding of the importance of STEAM education and build capacity to sustain a viable STEAM educational program to prepare students for work and life in the 21st century that aligns to our Strategic Plan and our emphasis on Project Based Learning, global citizenship, and the 4C’s - communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity

·      Hire teachers into PVSD in core classes with a background in STEAM, past experience in STEAM and/or Project Based Learning, or a sincere interest in becoming part of a STEAM-focused district