Fifty excited educators gathered in Silver Spring MD tonight for the kick-off of the premiere Siemens STEM Institute. The afternoon started with tours of 1 Discovery Plaza, national headquarters of Discovery Education and the site for an exciting week of networking, professional development and brainstorming all things STEM. "Ice" was broken with a great activity involving a "cardapult" which really got the participants working together.
Dinner was followed by the Keynote Speaker, Dr Alan Leshner, who enthralled the group with his comments regarding "Science for all". Dr. Leshner emphasized that total integration of science, technology, engineering and math with real world applications is the ONLY way to reach those "middle of the road" disenfranchised students. "In order to thrive in the modern world, EVERYONE must be familiar with science". "It ain't just about taking care of the highest pool" was his way of saying that we have to make sure that our energies meet the needs of all students, not just those who are the best and the brightest. Following the keynote participants had an opportunity for further networking as they shared their "state-themed" gifts. As one fellow posted on the group sharing page... "An awesome start to a very great week! Thank you!"