Exciting, new things are happening at Chapel Hill Elementary.

In pursuit of STEAM certification, the school is excited to announce they have implemented a STEAM teacher as part of the exploratory program at the school.

“The goal of STEAM at Chapel Hill Elementary School is to ensure students are nationally competitive and encourage student’s ingenuity and creativity,” Chapel Hill Principal LaTonya Jones said. “CHES is excited to announce students will participate in STEAM during Specials for the 2020-2021 school year. Mrs. Sally Reese will serve as the STEAM teacher at CHES. Mrs. Reese will have the opportunity to shape the future of innovation in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics.

Mrs. Reese will blend science and technology together to incorporate the 4C’s (critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication) and problem solving skills into daily practices”

STEAM is based on the idea of educating students in five specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.

“My job as a STEAM teacher is to engage the students and build their Critical thinking and problem solving skills through hands-on activities that involve age appropriate content from the state standards,” Reese said. “I am a facilitator who encourages collaboration and allows the students to think outside the box and explore on their own as they are building their content knowledge in the areas of science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.”

In addition to introducing STEAM topics to our students, Reese is an integral part of school’s community of educators. She collaborates with her peers that work in Douglas County and she belongs to a few STEM/STEAM groups online that share resources that have worked for them. She has attended trainings and workshops for STEAM.

Reese is also pursuing a Computer Science Endorsement to learn skills to teach students. Teaching STEAM skills is an integral part of this generation of learners and meeting the needs of future jobs that are not established yet.

Teaching students to think as engineers and scientists has a great impact on their learning. It improves their critical thinking and problem solving skills.

When students can take the content they are learning in their regular classrooms and apply that to the real world, it helps them to understand what they are learning and allows them to apply it to everyday situations.