5.41-japan-9-detail-c STEM education Highlights Relevant to Sustainable Design:

Science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) count.

Knowledge of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) is most likely a key driver for gainful employment in the twenty-first century. Unfortunately, America has slipped in education when it comes to STEM. Every three years, the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) measures reading ability, math and science literacy, and other key skills among fifteen-year-olds in dozens of developed and developing countries. In 2012, the PISA placed the United States at thirty-fifth out of sixty-four countries in math and twenty-seventh in science.[i] We can do better!

The left side of this sketch includes a diagram of a folding process for a three-by-three grid. For children, math can become interesting in multiple ways other than memorizing multiplication tables. This folding process is one way to conceptually understand the relationship that 3 x 3 = 9 and how pairs of adjacent geometric shapes relate to each other both as triangles and squares. Gaming is a fundamental early development tool for math, and if it is done with physical materials like folded paper in addition to digital gaming, the odds of absorption may increase. The part 3, “Commercial Impact,” section of this book includes a chapter on the Perpetual Food Machine that can ignite multiple pistons in the STEM engine for students. Sustainable design requires innovative engineering, and STEM will help people create numerous innovations beyond what we can imagine today.

Author and illustrator: Charlie Szoradi is an architect, inventor, and the CEO of Independence LED Lighting. He writes about many other topics related to STEM education and development tools through his extensive travels around the world.

If you have found this posting online, it is an excerpt from Mr. Szoradi’s book Learn from Looking that served as the inspiring seed content for this drawing share resource. For additional drawings and insights on STEM education, we hope that you enjoy exploring LearnfromLooking.com. You can search via general terms such as sustainability as well as narrower terms within STEM education such as science, technology, engineering, and math.

[i] Student Performance:

Japan 9: Detail (c)—Science and Math Education: http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/02/02/u-s-students-improving-slowly-in-math-and-science-but-still-lagging-internationally/.