Catapult Learning, a leading provider of instructional intervention and professional development solutions, today announced the successful completion of a pilot program of its new STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) offering in public and private schools throughout the Houston area.
Catapult Learning works with hundreds of district partners across the country and sees first-hand how school administrators can struggle with integrating STEM education into K-12 classrooms. Helping eliminate this pain point, the company launched a turnkey supplemental program that easily integrates into a district’s existing curriculum either during or after school, summer school or as part of a professional development initiative.
The program can be adapted for gifted and talented programs as well as Title I students. Catapult Learning’s STEM program places special emphasis on the engineering design process. For all students, utilizing STEM to develop problem-solving skills helps strengthen their math and reading abilities.
The program’s inquiry-based curriculum is designed to change the way teachers and students think about STEM. Students gain a deep understanding of the engineering design process by defining problems, conducting background research, brainstorming multiple ideas for solutions, developing and creating prototypes, and then testing, evaluating and redesigning their approach. “For many of our students, Catapult Learning’s STEM program is a wonderful addition to the classroom instruction,” said Barbara Kielaszek, learning coordinator at St. Ambrose Catholic School, where the program was piloted as an afterschool program. “It is very interactive and fun, and for students to be able to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in other ways helps build their confidence.”
Beginning in April, Catapult Learning’s STEM program in Houston reached 600 students in five public and 35 private schools. More than 220 students were enrolled in this year’s summer program. Earlier this year, Catapult Learning also provided teachers with professional development in the form of counseling in how to best teach STEM.
“Our goal is to help all schools, public and private, access easy ways to integrate STEM into existing curriculum,” said Meridith Banks, regional director of Catapult Learning programs in Texas and Oklahoma. “Our programs are all-inclusive with efficient implementation of as little as a few weeks. We provide all the materials and tools and make sure teachers are well-prepared.”
Lessons integrate hands-on learning tools and activities to create an engaging, fun, and creative learning environment. Catapult Learning’s STEM program aligns with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and College and Career Readiness Standards as well as the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) standards.
The programs support whole and small group instruction as well as individual learning. To help schools effectively integrate a STEM program into their schools, Catapult Learning designed implementation models that include summer enrichment, after- and during school programs, and professional development designed to assist schools in integrating STEM principles.
About Catapult Learning
Catapult Learning, Inc. has dedicated more than four decades to providing education solutions that generate demonstrable academic achievement and better life outcomes for students, regardless of the learning barriers and other challenges they may face. The company’s team of over 5,000 educators works to achieve sustained academic gains and build teacher and leadership capacity through evidence-based programs that include intervention services, special education, alternative education programs, and professional development solutions. Founded in 1976 and headquartered in Camden, New Jersey, Catapult Learning partners with more than 500 school districts, including 18 of the 20 largest school districts in the United States. Catapult Learning is accredited by AdvancED, a global leader in providing improvement and accreditation services worldwide.