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STEAM library

Carly and Adam event inspires Pitsco grant winner to connect STEAM, literacy

Published June 4, 2021
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When Michelle Kramer attended STEM influencers Carly and Adam’s virtual STEM Teacher Summit in the summer of 2020, her inspiration to begin a STEAM library, sparked initially by a Wayne RESA Maker-STEM Summit in 2019, turned into an all-out passion. “Both events were so empowering, and the sessions just made my brain start going crazy with ideas,” said Kramer.

The Carly and Adam event included four keynote addresses, 12 PD sessions over various STEM topics (one hosted by Pitsco Education), bonus STEM activities, a Pitsco STEM Box giveaway, and more. After attending, Kramer began growing her STEAM library by purchasing 50 books aimed to connect STEAM to literacy. “There are so many ways to integrate literacy into STEAM, and [you can] start with reading a book and then building upon that with a design challenge,” she said.

Kramer, a computer lab assistant at Maire Elementary School in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, loves finding new ways to bring STEAM experiences to her students. “I am so passionate about our budding STEAM program and our STEAM literacy library,” she explained. “It is so fun and engaging for the students.”

In addition to the STEAM library, Kramer and her colleagues, with avid support from Principal Ryan Francis, have started a small makerspace at Maire. So, when Kramer found out she won the December 2020 monthly Pitsco grant, she was thrilled. “I heard about the Pitsco grant because I follow Pitsco on Twitter,” she said. Although she hasn’t used her Pitsco grant yet, she’s excited about the opportunity to continue growing STEAM activities for her students. “I keep looking and trying to decide what would be the best thing to get!”

And she’s not the only one who’s excited. Even though her STEAM library and makerspace are still growing, her students are already enthusiastic. “Now that they know we are expanding and we have some awesome new additions in here, they cannot wait. . . . And they always have the best comments: ‘This is more fun than recess!’ ‘I wish we could come to the makerspace every day.’ It brings a huge smile to my face and just reinforces the importance of continuing with what we have started here.”

“Pitsco provides not only materials, but full support. They are small enough to be personable and friendly and large enough to be efficient. They are clearly passionate about their mission to engage all kids in high-quality STEM education.”

– Debra Rouse, K-6 STEM specialist, North Cedar Community School District, Lowden, Iowa

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