Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) Education MUST Begin in Early Childhood Education: A Systematic Analysis of Washington State Guidelines Used to Gauge the Development and Learning of Young Learners
Briseno Sandoval, Luis Miguel
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This paper reflects future direction for early Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education, science in particular. Washington State stakeholders use guidelines including: standards, curriculums and assessments to gauge young children’s development and learning, in early childhood education (ECE). Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), and the Framework for K-12 programs (National Research Council, 2011) emphasizes the need for reconfiguration of standards: “Too often standards are a long list of detailed and disconnected facts… this approach alienates young people, it also leaves them with fragments of knowledge and little sense of the inherent logic and consistency of science and of its universality.” NGSS’ position elevates the concern and need for learners to experience teaching and learning from intentionally designed cohesive curriculum units, rather than as a series of unrelated and isolated lessons. To introduce the argument the present study seeks to examine Washington State early learning standards. To evaluate this need, I examined balance and coverage/depth. Analysis measures the level of continuum in high-quality guidelines from which Washington State operates to serve its youngest citizens and their families.
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