Research has been clear:
Access to hands-on building, tinkering, and the kinds of curriculum offered through STE(A)M Truck can increase access to STEM careers and build the skills critical for long term success. However, the tools, expertise, and time needed to utilize these types of strategies are usually unavailable in public schools, and especially so in public schools serving low income communities. Our program provides access to materials, expertise, and curriculum that can reach students during the school day directly on their own campus.
Our work is based on research indicating that a) memorable hands-on experiences predict interest in STEM, b) children in poverty tend to have fewer opportunities to engage in such experiences, and c) lack of informal education opportunities for children in poverty is a predictor of the achievement gap.
With our innovative and groundbreaking model, STE(A)M Truck provides ongoing technical support, professional development and guidance during the entire 20 day program. We align our Builds with a teacher's curriculum and ensure our work still shapes the classroom long after we drive away.
STE(A)M Truck is a platform that allows the broader community to directly, and authentically, work with teachers and students. And by providing maker mentor and teacher artist opportunities and stipends, we cultivate and grow local talent. Lastly, we use our mobile platform to "seed" maker hubs at schools, libraries, recreation centers and other public spaces.