South Korea has recently started to implement a STEM-like approach in K-12 education, titled STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics), to train the next generations of students to be innovators. As this approach has been shown to increase educational success, it is vital to prepare and develop interest in middle school students to participate in STEAM. This study examined the impact of hands-on global climate change monitoring projects that follow the six structured inventive thinking (SSIT) approach on the knowledge and perceptions of STEAM content by middle school students.
Materials and methods:
The participants in the study were 68 grade 7 students from a middle school in Seoul, Korea. Employing a quasi-experimental design, the participants were measured on their STEAM knowledge and perceptions before and after participation.
The findings indicate that students who participated in global climate change monitoring activities not only reported gains in their STEAM content knowledge but also showed an improvement in their perceptions of STEAM subjects. This latter was more pronounced for female middle school students than for male students.
This study suggest that carefully designed projects comprised of SSIT-based environmental activities can be effective at the middle school level.