Different places – one purpose
The MITF Tel Aviv + STEM track consists of 10 months in two realities: the reality of Tel Aviv and the reality of Beit Shean. Living in the center, and living in the periphery. Living next to the beach, and living in the Valley of Springs. The difference in people, environment, culture, and food provides such a unique perspective. However, my purpose is the same in both cities, to enhance students’ English abilities. And the children in both cities share the same overwhelming energy to learn.
One of the experiments I ran in Grade 5 and Grade 6 was a paper plane contest. Some students are obsessed with misbehaving, and that includes building and throwing paper planes. channeled this obsession into an experiment. The experiment was an opportunity to teach critical English words like “Design”, “Force”, and “Distance”. Beyond the English words, it was also an opportunity for the students to experience the design process and think critically. This is where being a STEM teacher plays in. I have the ability to challenge students into solving STEM problems, create an innovative environment, and inspire them to research answers for themselves.
The day after running the experiment, a student approached me with a book he had just acquired, an instructional book dedicated to paper plane designs. He was reading it to satisfy his own curiosity. I consider this a success, because now said student will learn more from the book then I could ever teach him about plane design. The more significant impact is that through this topic, he has experienced the joy of individual research.
The STEM track is a good opportunity for people that want to pass on their passion for science onto other students. Ultimately, this is an English teaching program, but STEM is one of the many tools that I have used in the past to enforce English. The students were also introduced to other classic experiments conducted in America like the egg dropping experiment, as well as the clay boat with marbles experiment.