Smart Classroom

Samsung Drills into STEM and Teamwork

Computer-maker Samsung Electronics has teamed up with two education technology companies to make systems especially targeted for STEM and collaborative learning scenarios. Both solutions were announced at this week's TCEA, the annual Texas Computer Education Association conference.

The science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) product is a bundle that Samsung has created with STEM Fuse, a South Dakota company that produces STEM curriculum. The bundle contains:

  • A 90-day, 10-license bundle of STEM Fuse's digital curriculum for STEM or STEAM with or without reading curriculum;
  • 10 Samsung Galaxy TAB E devices; and
  • Online professional development.

The curriculum includes Game:IT Elementary for grades K-5; Game:IT Junior (grades 6-8); Math Course 2 (grade 7); Math Course 3 (grade 8); Game:IT and IT Intermediate as well as Algebra 1, Web Site Design, Start:IT and Health:IT for grades 9-12; and Game:IT Advanced, Mobile App:IT, Biomedicine and Biotechnology for grades 10-12.

Two school districts have tried out the pairing and say they like what they've seen.

"We have two courses based on the solution where students are able to learn computer programming and test apps using STEM Fuse and Samsung's Galaxy Tablets," said Mike Kania, a business and technology teacher at Nicolet High School in Glendale, WI, in a prepared statement "The solution makes the process much quicker and students can easily use and see the programming applications on the Galaxy Tablets. Students in other departments are now evaluating the solution, such as engineering and science."

Latricia Donahue, a Spanish and computer science teacher at Venture Academy Family of Schools in Stockton, CA, said she likes how the integration helps facilitate "collaboration and creativity." "The ability for students to work with their peers on the same document is huge. They can even collaborate with students in another class, for instance, and I can provide students with more immediate feedback. Since implementing the solution, both parents and students are more interested in seeing what we have to offer with our 1-to-1 program."

Samsung's partnership with Tidebreak is bringing collaboration to the classroom. Tidebreak has several applications for allowing teams of students to work on projects together from their respective devices. This bundle combines Samsung large-format displays, or "e-boards," with a 30-day license for one of three Tidebreak programs:

  • ClassSpot, for "traditional" layouts where the display is at the front of the room and students participate from their seats;
  • ClassSpot PBL, for team-based learning rooms, where students are clustered in groups; and
  • TeamSpot, for huddle spaces, group study rooms, conference rooms and other small team work spaces.

Both product sets will be available for sale by the end of this month, the companies said.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.