1. STEM lessons focus on real-world issues and problems. STEM learning addresses real social, economic, and environmental problems and encourages solutions to them.
2. STEM lessons are guided by the engineering design process. Students try their own research-based ideas, take different approaches, make mistakes, practice useful failure, and keep trying.
3. STEM lessons immerse students in hands-on inquiry and open-ended exploration. STEM learning is open-ended; at the same time, the students’ work is collaborative and solutions are student-generated. There is also a sharing of ideas as they work to design their own investigations.
4. STEM lessons involve students in productive teamwork. With STEM learning, students work together as a productive team which is a practice modelled by STEM teachers across the school.
5. STEM lessons apply rigorous math and science content. STEM lessons purposely integrate content from maths and science subjects.
6. STEM lessons allow for multiple right answers and reframe failure as a necessary part of learning. STEM learning provides plenty of room for multiple right answers and approaches, and offers rich possibilities for creative solutions.