Carri Bevil saw firsthand how effective STEMscopes Science was in her district. So when asked to join the new STEMscopes Math team as a curriculum writer, she knew she’d be helping to create a quality learning experience. Bevil has been a key writer in the development of STEMscopes Math since 2018, and is actively involved as the team prepares to craft the company’s first middle school math curriculum.
Learning is a process that entails different levels of understanding. This is the basic idea behind Norman Webb’s Depth of Knowledge (DOK) model, which posits four tiers of understanding that students move through as they learn new content (but not necessarily in sequential order): recall and reproduction, skills and concepts, strategic thinking, and extended thinking.
Is being good at math necessary to finding a good job? Increasingly so, this is the case. While a discrete math skill (e.g., knowing how to use the quadratic formula) is not the key to getting a job, having a solid foundation in data interpretation, analytical skills, problem-solving, and quantitative thinking is.
Sometimes things just come together at the right time. Erin Rawlinson was a new mom. She loved her job as a third-grade teacher in Katy, Texas, but it was time for her to begin a new chapter, one in which she could stay home with her newborn son and be there for all those precious firsts. But there was one glaring problem: she would need supplemental income to leave her day job. Around that time, a former colleague called to see if she’d be interested in writing curriculum for STEMscopes Math. And there it was: the gig that would allow her to be at home with her son.
STEMscopes is built around an instructional concept pioneered by Rodger Bybee in the 1980s and further refined over the subsequent decades. In this model, called the 5E model, each scope (lesson) follows a sequence of 5 phases: