Where It Gets Interesting: Competing Models of STEM Learning after SchoolReport as inadecuate




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Afterschool Matters, n17 p1-8 Spr 2013

Afterschool programs are currently conceptualized in two ways. One is represented by expanded learning, which includes a wide range of content-rich opportunities in the hours outside of school, including summer camps. The operating assumption is that, in structured out-of-school time (OST) programs, children can learn concepts or develop capacities or interests that will later enhance their engagement in everyday as well as academic settings. The other model is extended learning, in which afterschool aligns more closely with the school curriculum. Interest in extended day models is growing as many communities seek more time to improve students' academic performance, generally measured by standardized achievement tests. Meanwhile, the additive model of learning assumes that if children participate in afterschool science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs by x amount, their overall interest, capacity, and engagement in STEM--and particularly in school STEM--should rise by an amount equivalent to x. In contrast to the additive model of learning, the authors posit a contextual model. In using this phrase, the authors follow a long line of scholars who have documented the ways in which learning, identity, interest, and participation are related to context. To better understand and capture the complex processes of learning, research in OST STEM needs to take a longer view of how OST fits into a larger learning ecology. It needs to attend to the specific contexts of STEM learning and clearly tie the measures of learning to the models of learning.

Descriptors: Achievement Tests, After School Programs, STEM Education, After School Education, Academic Achievement, Models, Science Education, Technology Education, Engineering Education, Mathematics Education, Grade 6, Science Activities, Middle School Students

National Institute on Out-of-School Time. Wellesley Centers for Women, 106 Central Street, Wellesley, MA 02481. Tel: 781-283-2547; Fax: 781-283-3657; e-mail: niost[at]wellesley.edu; Web site: http://www.niost.org





Author: Bevan, Bronwyn; Michalchik, Vera

Source: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=1334&id=EJ1003837



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