Did you know that offshore oil rigs are decommissioned and sunk to create artificial reefs around the United States?
New “anywhere” activities from the STEM Careers Coalition help educators bring the real-world to life by making the connections between NGSS-aligned curriculum and current scientific innovation.
As a first-of-its-kind STEM initiative, the STEM Careers Coalition is working to address the STEM workforce and inspiration gap by connecting industry and classrooms at unprecedented scale. The Coalition currently provides a catalog of standards-aligned classroom activities, student activation and career-focused resources to support educators, students and families in STEM exploration.
Developed in conjunction with Coalition member API, several of these new activities help students take a closer look at the role of science in the world around them, while exposing them to the many STEM career paths available to pursue.
- In From Rigs to Reefs, students learn about artificial reefs and research the benefits of providing these environments to support marine life. They will also have the opportunity to develop their analytic capabilities through brainstorming scientific questions related to the rigs-to-reefs approach and collaborating with partners to create an infographic demonstrating their learning. In an optional extension of the activity, students can practice their skills of persuasion by writing a short article defending their position on which rig designs work better for conversion to artificial reefs.
- A new Chemistry focused activity, Combustion of Hydrocarbons, has students learn to build reactants and explore several combustion reactants. Using molecular model kits or a combination of Styrofoam balls, pipe cleaners and candy or toothpicks, students get hands-on experience identifying the amount of energy needed for each bond that is broken and formed during the reaction. Students are also encouraged to make career connections during the process by reviewing the various engineering careers available in the natural gas and oil industry where this type of analysis and evaluation of large-scale complex systems is happening every day.
The STEM Careers Coalition exists to ensure that ALL students have opportunities for access to quality resources to support STEM learning. Through resources like these and direct investment in schools around the country, the Coalition is uniting the private sector around the shared goal of accelerating the growth of the United States’ STEM pipeline.