STEM & STEAM
LEGO Ed Launches Free PD for Teachers
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Education, the education arm of
the toy company, has launched free professional
development, to help teachers
learn how to embed play and hands-on learning into their STEAM
lessons. The company worked with the Tufts
University Center for Engineering Education Outreach,
which supports the integration of engineering into K-12 education, to
develop the content. The two organizations have collaborated on a
number of projects in the past, including workshops about LEGO
engineering for educators.
The PD will
consist of a self-guided, competency-based learning program designed
on a framework covering four areas: pedagogy, STEAM concepts, 21st
century skills and classroom management. Learning takes two
directions: "learning bursts" for quick and focused skills
practice; and "learning quests" for deeper competency
development. There is no particular order teachers have to follow.
include videos of actual classrooms and teacher interviews to show
the various competencies in a variety of learning
environments--in-person, physically distanced and virtual. Teachers
should note that the competencies may not qualify for PD credits
since LEGO Ed isn't an accredited institution.
who has used the PD is Jennifer Rodabaugh, a STEAM lab teacher at
Elementary School in Lexington,
KY. "I can brush up on teaching techniques or coding during my
lunch break or even from the comfort of my couch," she said in a
press release. "The engaging and relevant courses not only
develop teaching skills but also build confidence using real-world
classroom examples and best practices."
"We are excited
to offer a new platform to support teachers' professional development
and equip them with strategies and skills to make STEAM learning
playful," added Esben Stærk, president of LEGO Education. "When
teachers are truly confident in playful hands-on learning, they
deliver more motivating, engaging and joyful learning experiences.
Combine confident teachers and students and the classroom becomes a
place of endless possibilities limited only by their imagination and
Learn more on
the LEGO Education website.
Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.