Granite Mountain School Becomes STEM Certified
Granite Mountain School is 1 of only 8 other schools in Arizona with this AdvancED STEM Certification, and only 140 schools in the US and internationally hold this same prestigious certification.
Granite has always offered a unique climate and cultural opportunity for families to bridge the elementary to middle school years with a STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Arts and Mathematics) education experience geared to 5th and 6th grade students. These programs help prepare students for careers of tomorrow by fostering and perpetuating enthusiasm for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. STE(A)M-based learning involves the integration of STEAM concepts into core subject matter learning in order to deepen student understanding and create real-world relevance in learning. While studying a specific topic, students interactively explore how it relates to a variety of disciplines. This interactive approach allows students, in meaningful ways, to begin to appreciate subjects like math, social studies, language arts, and science.
Granite Mountain students participate in STEAM Academy Wednesdays. During this time, students face problem-based tasks that enhance the classroom curriculum taking place on the other days of the week. If you walk into a STEAM Academy class, you might see catapults being built, classroom gardens being constructed, simple machines being designed, or students researching new technology to solve a current disease. No matter what, you’ll definitely find engaged students using their critical thinking skills. Every student at Granite loves the hands on learning that takes place on STEAM Academy Wednesdays. It always starts with a problem and ends with a solution, but the middle steps can vary. The targeted learning goals on the part of students, with support from their teachers, lend to student growth as well as providing a real-world connection to their own learning.
AdvancED’s STEM Certification provides Granite Mountain School a research-based framework and criteria for awareness, continuous improvement, and assessment of the quality, rigor, and substance of the STEM educational programs. The Standard and Indicators clearly define the qualities and components vital to creating and sustaining superior, student-centered STEM teaching and learning programs, as well as clear expectations for student outcomes and mastery of 21st century skills for 5th and 6th grade students. PUSD is proud of this achievement!