RULE, Texas — Many school districts throughout the state have put an emphasis on science, technology, engineering, and math or STEM learning in their classrooms. For smaller rural schools that may not have the same resources it could be harder to teach.
However, Learning Undefeated along with the Texas Education Agency (TEA) are taking their mobile STEM across Texas to help give smaller school districts and their students an opportunity of a lifetime, and Tuesday morning saw that chance come to Rule ISD.
Students ranging from grades K through 8th got a chance to step aboard the Mobile STEM lab that was set up just outside of Rule ISD where they were given a variety of lessons that taught them about the principles behind STEM.
The goal of the lab is to give students an opportunity to learn hands on by performing experiments and getting other lessons. We spoke to staff from both Rule ISD and the mobile lab who believe that this chance could light a fire in the young minds of students,
Paul Harris is the Principal for Rule ISD and told us that, “If we had one student that caught the spark of science, technology, engineering, and math; that would be the beginning of the rising tide that lifts all ships. If we just had one it would be a great thing.”
While Katie Askelson who is the Education Outreach Coordinator for Learning Undefeated explained what it means to give kids a chance to learn in a way they may not have gotten before, “A lot of us teachers are like ‘If you can just help that one kid’ but it really is true. If you can just touch one life, even if it’s just for a split second, it’s just amazing that you know that your influence is able to maybe have them find a career path that the never would have known about.”
With Rule being such a small community, they lack the resources that other bigger schools have but Amanda Jeter, who has been teaching for over 20 years, believes this experience can inspire students about their future careers and the opportunities they might not have thought they had,
“You can be a kid from Rule and going into the world and have a STEM career. It’s amazing that they have other options than be just the wonderful cotton farmer or wonderful wheat farmer that we have here. Some of the rural jobs we have here that we definitely need kids going into but there’s also other options for them as well.”
The lessons that are taught on the mobile lab are TEA approved and teachers can take them back to their classrooms for future use.
Applications for the mobile STEM lab to come to your schools’ campus can be found at Learning Undefeated’s website but close on the May 26th for the 2024 school year.