Thursday, April 12, 2012

Introducing STEMmom

Ultimate Blog Party 2012
I am a first-time participant of the Ultimate Blog Party and have been looking forward to this event for weeks.  I've put together a post that will give you a good idea of what can be found here at STEMmom.org.

To meet the varying learning styles of my readers, I've got several ways you can learn more about me and this website. I've got a video introduction, a Prezi presentation, which includes 2 short videos, for those of you who are auditory and visual. (The video has bloopers that showcase more of the reality of the life of a blogging Mom!) And then I also wrote a narrative for those of you who prefer to read because of your verbal/linguistic bent! Thanks so much for stopping by, I look forward to meeting you. Please leave a comment and consider signing up to following my Blog, Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook!   






Hi, my name is Darci and I’m the author of the virtual space STEMmom.org and the real-life book STEM Student Research Handbook.  STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
I’ve chosen this niche because I have spent 12 years as a public school science and English teacher and believe in the importance of science education.  I now volunteer as a high school science lab coordinator at a Christian boarding school for troubled boys, and also work the university level, but as the name implies, I’m also a mom. So now, I’d like to introduce my two boys.

Caleb Age 5
Corban Age 1

Here at STEM mom, my focus is always learning. Whether it’s a formal science lesson, craft or outdoor activity, with preschool or high school age kids, I always find ways to make STEM connections. 


My guess is, you’re already doing similar activities, I just provide provoking questions and the STEM slant to support you as you slide in those teaching moments here and there. Its important to me that kids see connections of science and math in the activities they do everyday. These shouldn’t be seen as difficult subjects in school, but rather a way to discover and learn about the world around them. I provide printable labs for download, which I organize on the Lessons page. My labs are all piecemealed together, borrowing from the best I can find (I always cite where I get my material.) I do at least one lab a week (sometimes 2) with high school boys at a boarding school where I volunteer. Sometimes I’ll blog about the details, and other times, I just post the lab with a brief description.

As a professionally trained educator (and one who trains preservice teachers) I am considering homeschooling my own kids, I am hoping that STEMmom.org will be my connecting place to meet parents who nurture their kids emotionally and intellectually.
I feel as if I'm between two worlds; with the potential of being rejected by both. I could really use some support in this area! If you can speak to this...help!
I hope you’ll take a little time and look around the STEMmom website. My posts are varied because I have young kids, teach high school and college, and do professional development for teachers. I often design a science lab for high school, then modify it for my 5 year old. My passion is helping kids learn about the process of science, rather than the facts of science. You’ll see in my posts that I label activities with various science process skills, like observation, data collection, research design, or data analysis. Children are performing these skills from an early age. As parents and teachers we really need to allow time for our kids to just be curious. This means giving them time to explore, and ask questions. Our response to them should not always to give them answers, but to ask more questions! And that’s what I try and do at STEMmom, is to help you model the skill of asking great questions.

I will also periodically make posts that will help teachers and parents who are using the STEM Student Research Handbook. If I do say so myself, this book is a great tool if you are guiding a student through a long-term research project. It walks student researchers through every step of the process, from finding reliable resources and developing a strong research design, to collecting and interpreting the data as well as how to write a scientific paper. I offer online professional development for those teachers who want to take a course and I also travel to districts who plan on using the handbook as the backbone of a research curriculum. I plan on designing an online course for high school-performing homeschoolers, or for students’ whose high school curriculum does not include research projects. The teacher/parent course will be summer of 2012, and the high school course will be offered as this fall.


I posted some slightly different tid-bits on the about me page. 

Thanks for stopping by. I look forward to meeting you!  



34 comments:

  1. Stopping by to say hi from the UBP12! Have a great weekend! http://funhandprintart.blogspot.com/2012/04/woohoo-its-party-time-our-2012-ultimate.html

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  2. Your boys are too cute :) Science is my 1st grade daughter's favorite subject! Sounds like you've worked hard and accomplished a lot with STEM.

    Nice to meet you via UBP12!

    Tami
    Colorado Mountain Mom
    http://coloradomountainmom.com

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, I love to hear about girls loving science! As it should be! So nice to meet you!

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  3. Your website looks super interesting! So glad I stumbled upon it through the UBP!

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  4. Oh my goodness Darci! And you're only "thinking" about homeschooling? :) You have so much behind you that I am sure you would be GREAT and not only that, you could be a huge resource for other homeschoolers as well! Thanks for stopping by the party on my blog! I look forward to getting to know you!
    ~ Dawn @ TheMommaKnows.com

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement! I'm so looking forward to connecting to bloggers that can support me along the way! I love the idea of sharing resources for homeschooling our kids! So glad to have found you!

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  5. love the site. love the bloopers! hope to catch up on one of my trips home!

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    1. Hey Carrie, Thanks for posting! I spent a little time at your site, and I so miss your sense of humor (and Ryan's...I love his twitter post when you sprained your ankle..hilarious!) Yes, let's catch up!

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  6. Thanks for stopping by my blog~gosh your boys are adorable! I hope the workbox idea works for you-tweak it to fit your needs :) (somewhere on there, I have a post about the basics of it) and I will come back to visit once the party is over and I can concentrate :)

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    1. Thanks, I'm thinking the workboxes will work good both for my OCD issues, and for my son's never-ending question "what's next?" I'll be going back to your "Whats in the box?" site for help here in the next few weeks. But seriously, you have 5 blogs? When do you have time for it all?

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  7. I'm visiting from the UBP. I was a science teacher and engineer before I had my 2 boys. Now we are planing to homeschool (if I don't get a teaching job this year). I'll be following you for some great ideas! http://raisingourfamily.blogspot.com

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    1. Meaghan, I spend quite a bit of time on your site, and in the hopes you don't go running for the hills, I think we're now best friends. We have so much in common its ridiculous! Our boys are about the same age, we both are considering homeschooling this fall, we both are (were) teachers in STEM areas, and we are trying to raise our families with God at the center! Can't wait to get to know you more! :)

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  8. lol I love your video, and your boys are totally cute! Stopping by from the UBP and following you back in all kinda ways. :) Love your creative use of your blog name too!

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    1. Thanks Tree, I'm not sure people know what STEM is yet, but I guess that's part of my job too, to help educate!

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  9. I am hopping over from the UBP blog hop. Your site looks fantastic! I have signed up to follow you and look forward to your future posts.

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    1. Great, thanks for the follow. I'll be seeing you around for sure! Love your printables.

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  10. I am visiting from the UBP! Nice to meet you! Your digital scavenger hunt looks so fun!

    Jennifer from Teachingboys.net

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    1. Jennifer, thanks so much for stopping by. I consider you one of the BIG wig bloggers out there, so the fact that you stopped by and made a comment means a lot. I'm following you, and FB...congrat on the double party week!

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  11. Good for you Cuz! I am so proud of you as you figure this all out... also so amazing to me that we share so many pedagogically similar ideas and concepts of best practice. I totally get the world you are balancing I agree- you could be rejected by both sides, but I am praying that both groups can understand and embrace the calling God has on your life to minister to your family first, but also to use your gifts and talents in a larger academic setting both at the ranch and at the university. While I don't homeschool in the sense that my kids get all their formal education at home, I do individualize and enrich my children's education in my time with them. But as long as you do what God has called you to-- it will work the way He wants... I love checking in on your blog and gaining inspiration, my bend is more verbal/linguistic, but I love these ideas and see value in them!

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    1. Your comment brought tears to my eyes. Your encouraging words mean more than I can say! Your prayers are appreciated, and your complements mean a lot, coming from someone who who teaches preservice elementary school teachers!

      And you are right that even families that don't officially homeschool, do individualize and enrich their education in the time they spend with them! I'm so glad that I can provide some activities that you might already do, but add the STEM component! Coming from the home I did, it was the way I was raised! Science and literacy was integrated into everything! The line between learning and fun was always been blurry if non-existent for me when with my family at home. (Unfortunately, at school, the line was easy to determine!)

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  12. Hi! Thanks for dropping by ECA! Nice to meet you! :) Love your site -- ideas galore!

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  13. Nice to "meet" you! Just dropping by from The Ultimate Blog Party I am looking forward to networking with you and getting to know you better! I hope you have the opportunity to visit our blog! http://www.thehealthymoms.net/2012/04/ultimate-blog-party-2012.html

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  14. Thank you SO much for stopping by my blog and leaving such a sweet comment. Your blog looks great! I'm following you back!

    Blessings,
    Kristine

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  15. Stopping by to say hi from the UBP! I loved that you had covered all the bases for your intro, I love reading things but videos rock!

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    1. Yeah, I'm a true believer in the learning styles thing, so videos and text are a nice combo! Glad you stopped by!

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  16. I was just reading an article recently on STEM and the need for the inclusion of Art so that it would be STEAM. Then I find your blog through the UBP 12. As a former teacher and now a mom, I love doing Science with children and find they are the most natural learners.

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    1. Yup, you are so write. I've heard of STEAM, and feel art fits so naturally into all fascists of not only science but all content areas of learning. I'm so glad you found my blog, and hope that you get good ideas to do with your kids!

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    2. How embarrasing...I of course meant "right," not "write." Literacy is also important! Humph!

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  17. Be still my heart. I am a former middle school science teacher and now a full time mom. Just reading through your blog has filled me with so much inspiration! My oldest is incredibly curious about the natural world and it's inner workings. You have motivated me to set something up for him tomorrow! Thank you.

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    1. No, be still my heart! I love the premise of your blog. I completely understand how being a mom changes how you think about food! I'm so glad you found my website and am glad you can find inspiration! Thanks too for the FB post on the digital scavenger hunt.

      We live in the middle of corn and bean fields so I am planning a lengthy research project with my 5 year old of measuring the corn/beans weekly and studying where food comes from. If you have any ideas to add, I'd love to hear them! :) So glad we connected here in the blogging world! :)

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  18. Hi! I'm stopping by from the UBP - belatedly because my week was just insane so I had no time before now to visit anyone - and am so glad to "meet" you. I am a homeschooler (and former public school teacher) who writes about our home learning journey as well as other things. Hope you'll stop by: http://tinahollenbeck.blogspot.com/2012/04/2012-ultimate-blog-party.html.

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    1. Yes, I found your site via the UBP and left you a post! I'm looking to connect with teachers who now homeschool their own kids. I'm glad we made the connection!

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  19. I didn't have enough time during the UBP to visit all of the wonderful blogs, so I'm sorry I'm just now getting to meet you. I'm a former public school teacher and I currently homeschool my children. So excited to have found your blog!

    You can find me at http://sloanhomeschool.blogspot.com/

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I love comments! Would love to know you were here! :)

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