This past week I taught a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) class to an amazing group of kids. I learned a lot through this experience, so I wanted to share my experience with you.
First off, I learned that it is very important to pace yourself. Pacing yourself will allow the kids to feel like the class is moving at a good speed, not too fast and not too slow. Pacing the yourself, and not talking to fast, will allow the kids to learn more as there is more time to comprehend the information. I learned that being effective in pacing your activities will hold the student's attention for a longer time. If you have the student's full attention, they will be able to learn a lot more compared to a student who is not paying attention.
Also, since the STEAM class includes so many different subjects, it is important to not change topics too fast. If you change the topic from science to technology to mathematics to arts in one class, this will create confusion in the classroom and the students will not be able to focus. Instead of changing topics, I learned to incorporate the subjects together within one activity. For instance an activity that included math and art together was the pi skyline art that we did together. I will not go into detail about what this is but if you want to check it out, click on this link:
Another important factor is timing. I found that each day the timing was very different. One day I would have too little material and the next I would have way too much and some days I would have it perfect. I learned that you need to be able to change your lesson plans according to timing. When I noticed I had a lot of time, I was very thankful that i had a lot of extra activities planned in the case of there being a lot more time left. I think that as a teacher/counselor it is very important to have extra activities planned that connect with the idea that you are focusing on during that day, because you never know when an activity could go faster than planned. When I noticed time was running out, I had to revise my lesson to make sure that I was not holding the kids overtime, because I know that students stop paying attention right when the class ends.