Diversity in STEM Teaching

Projects that reflect the heterogeneity and diversity of our society, e.g. teaching methods that engage students with different learning levels or different cultural backgrounds.

(D1) kaSTEM: Embracing Diversity in STEM Education for Young Minds, A. B. Būmane (LV)

Institution: Tukuma Raina gimnazija \Tukums Rainis Gymnasium

Subjects: Mathematics, technology, engineering, science

The KaSTEM project is an innovative STEM educational toolkit designed for children aged 6-8, focusing on inclusivity and diversity. Addressing Latvia’s STEM engagement gap, it combines physics, chemistry, and basic engineering in interactive experiments. Key features include a comprehensive guidebook, video tutorials, and unique pictogram instructions for children with autism spectrum disorder. The project underwent thorough prototyping and testing, involving community and expert feedback. KaSTEM aims to ignite a lifelong passion for STEM in all young learners, regardless of their learning needs.

(D2) Portfolio pedagogy supporting STEM-learning, P. Ryynänen-Alaluusua & E. Jalo (FI)

Institution: Helsinki Vocational College and Adult Institute

Subjects: Physics, biology, chemistry, food science, microbiology, vocational studies, language learning

We combine the experience of learning in an e-portfolio across disciplines such as STEM, languages, and vocational education. Students with different study and language skills create e-portfolios in which they describe their own learning experience at their skill level. By combining theoretical concepts with hands-on experiences, such as analysing chemical reactions while baking, students not only acquire professional skills but also gain a holistic understanding of STEM principles. Cooperation between different subjects combines things in a way that activates memory and encourages students to observe and understand phenomena in different contexts while developing their own competence.

(D3) Bringing Coffee Grounds Back to Life, R. Pociutė & V. Šamrina (LT)

Institution: Vydūno gymnasium

Subjects: Physics, biology, mathematics, computer science/ICT/IT, technology, arts

This project aims to emphasise the problems of a real world that can be solved by complex and interdisciplinary knowledge. The creativity and vision of the students provide practical ideas. Escalating problems students come up with ecological coffee scented solutions.
Problem no. 1 – How do not slip on the winter road to school?
Solution: Design a road sprayer to scatter coffee grounds on the road.
Problem no. 2  – Would you like silky skin?
Solution: Soap with coffee grounds body scrub.
Problem no. 3. Would you like cozy smelling home?
Solution: Unpleasant odor absorber made from coffee grounds.
Students creatively solved real-world problems, conducted research, proposed business ideas.

(D4) Do you want to feel an atom? A. M. N. Lucena (ES)

Institution: Instituto de Enseñanza Secundaria IES Gran Capitán

Subjects: Chemistry, mathematics, STEAM, language

One day in class I was going to explain the concept of the atom and the different elements that make up the periodic table. But it turns out that there was a special student: a completely blind student. It was impossible for this student to follow me. This is how this scientific research arises, in which it is this student’s own classmates who consider how they could design an atom that could be understood using touch by a student with visual disabilities. There have been more than 100 different investigations. A hypothesis for each one: choose what materials to use and how to place them to be able to identify them, testing them themselves. In this way, the first known INCLUSIVE PERIODIC TIFLOTATABLE has been prepared using STEAM methodology.

(D5) From Waste to Taste: Can Fruit Peel Revolutionize Our Sustainable Food Future? M. Henriques & I. Moreira (PT)

Institution: Escola Secundária de Valongo

Subjects: Science, geography, cooking and baking, special education

This interdisciplinary project endeavors to transform fruit peels, with a primary focus on pineapple peels, from waste into valuable resources, pioneering a shift toward a more sustainable food system. By unlocking the nutritional and functional potential of fruit peels, the project aims to reduce food waste, lessen environmental impact, innovate in food product development, and foster a circular economy. Through collaborative research spanning various fields, this project seeks to promote waste reduction, enhance nutrition, and engage communities in sustainable practices, ultimately charting a path toward a more sustainable food future.

(D6) The GENEsis Genetics Club, S. Lewis (UK)

Institution: The Thomas Hardye School

Subjects: Biology

The GENEsis Laboratory is an afterschool club which has allowed over one hundred students to develop laboratory technical skills in genetic techniques such as the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and Electrophoresis. It has also allowed them to sequence DNA and work to interpret it. Working in small teams, in a school laboratory, students have then used these skills to develop their own ideas for independent projects relating to the genetics in the wider environment. They have then collected experimental data, written scientific posters and presented at internal and external poster symposiums.

(D7) Plurilingual Geometry Workshop for 8th Grade Students at Koivukylä School, E. Tamminen, U. Mohamed & T. Rantaniitty (FI)

Institution: Koivukylän koulu

Subjects: Mathematics, native language education

In our school 32 different languages are spoken. Excluding Finnish, the greatest of them are Arabic, Russian, Estonian, Albanian and Somali. Language
awareness (LA) in education sees student’s home language as a strength and therefore mathematics lessons could also be a lesson in students’ home language. Following this view we organised a mathematics workshop in geometry in semester
22-23 in Albanian and Somali. In semester 23-24 we  added Arabic as a third language and percentages as a new topic for an additional workshop. We believe that
LA in education creates an inclusive atmosphere and meaningful experiences for the students, and ultimately the workshops were met with delight by the students.

(D8) Inclusive robotics through PBL – case-based learning, K. Negmanova (KZ)

Institution: school#7

Subjects: Physics, biology, computer science/ICT/IT, science

The project helps develop technical skills through construction and programming for children with special educational needs. It includes game-based activities from simple to complex. Children work with 4 cases related to the creation of a robot bug. The cases include describing bugs and coming up with stories about them, creating a robot bug from scrap materials, using Scratch components to program and control the robot, and creating a robot bug on the Arduino platform with a C++ program. Children actively participate creatively within a peer group. All of this makes a significant contribution to the social and physical rehabilitation of children.

(D9) Business of creative language in the school context: Illustrations of folkworks (fairy tales), R. Kazlauskiené & S. Kaminskienė (LT)

Institution: Vilniaus Žemynos Gymnasium

Subjects: Computer science/ICT/IT, Lithuanian language, foreign language, art, photography, theater

This project aims to integrate the student’s personal experience, the literature read at school or encouraged by teachers to read, art and technology, and the learning of foreign languages, promoting the students’ creativity and entrepreneurship education. Students analyse Lithuanian and German folk tales, create illustrations using the shadows they create and photograph and use the Collage Maker app.  Students learn to take and edit pictures, using them in their creative works. The project also includes learning German through the presentations of fairy tale scenarios. They created a board game for learning German language and also have been introduced to the book creating process and cultural heritage.

(D10) Inquiry activities for the planet – the planet for everyone, J. Vágner & K. Vágnerová (CZ)

Institution: Elementary school for children with special education needs, Klatovy & Masaryk´s primary school Klatovy

Subjects: Physics, biology, mathematics, computer science/ICT/IT, art, reading

This is a cooperation project between an elementary (practical) school and a club for gifted children in the field of science activities. Teaching at the practical school is focused on simplicity, clarity and interest, inquiry activities can often be adapted for smart first-grade children as well as for children with special educational needs. The project presents several examples of joint activities that involve children from both schools and show their mutual enrichment. All these activities require cooperation between teachers from different schools.

(D11) It’s so touching! A. Ktioris (CY)

Institution: Ag. Georgios Lyceum

Subjects: Mathematics, computer science/ICT/IT, technology

Certain units in maths, like stereometry, are particularly difficult to be approached by visually impaired students. This project redesigned the student’s textbook in a 3D dynamic form, using the architectural program SketchUp, adapted the shapes in augmented reality, implemented them on cy-maths.com and printed them on a 3D printer.
Low vision students can use a tablet during class or at home to access the website, explore the shape and interact constructively with them. Students with complete blindness can touch the 3D printed shapes, explore their parameters and engage for a first time, in solving the exercises. All students and all teachers can benefit from this features.

(D12) Animals as teachers, A. Virtanen (FI)

Institution: Vesalan peruskoulu

Subjects: Biology, science

For more than thirty years, Vesala Comprehensive School has had a school greenhouse in the middle of the school as part of the school’s daily life and teaching. In addition to numerous plant species, the greenhouse is home to more than forty vertebrates, insects and snails. The greenhouse is used for a wide range of science lessons, but it can also be used to teach subjects such as art or literacy. It also teaches e.g. empathy, cooperation and responsibility. Animal-assisted learning gives learners self-confidence and self-reliance. Students also become active learners and participants. The greenhouse is also a place to relax and make new friends across class and cultural boundaries.

(D13) Learn through play, M.-O. Malgras (FR)

Institution: Lycée Charles Jully

Subjects: Physics, chemistry

In science, students have the chance to discover many concepts through experience. But what can they do when this isn’t possible? By using games, adapted or created to, for example, discover conversion between binary and decimal or to be able to determine the composition of an atom.
The game can also be used for remediation, to remember or to practice.

(D14) Going LOCO, P. Los (NL)

Institution: De Albatros (Nestas scholengroep)

Subjects: Physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, technology, science

In this project we present a “matching activity”. LOCO is suitable for remembering, understanding, applying as well as sorting. Pupils start the task with enthusiasm since answer possibilities are limited. Clear feedback is provided by an image at the end. It is an example of LUDO-pedagogy / gamification that enhances engagement. It is cheap, durable and easily applicable for science (but not limited to this field). This activity contributes to both knowledge and confidence of the participants – they really get motivated (excited). Examples shown are applicable at different key stages and for several subjects.

(D15) Non-traditional problems in physics teaching, J. Žoldák (SK)

Institution: Faculty of Science, Pavol Jozef Šafárik University in Košice

Subjects: Physics

In this project we present selected problems from the Young Physics Tournament competition. They are transformed in a form that could be used at a secondary school level, either as a demonstration or as a laboratory measurement. The corresponding experiments  and their physical principles are connected with the upper secondary school curriculum and have a large potential to motivate students towards learning physics since they involve phenomena from everyday life. The experiments involve: Wilberforce pendulum, candle powered turbine, conductive lines, floating rice, friction between book pages, tennis ball tower,  and others.

(D16) Pigeon Genetics, V. H. Širka (RS)

Institution: School Stevica Jovanovic

Subjects: Biology, mathematics, genetics, art

The Pigeon Genetics project was created so that students can understand how different combinations of genes (genotype) lead to the expression of different traits (phenotype) with hands-on activities. The pigeon is a genetically well-researched species, however the inheritance of pigeon traits had to be simplified in order to adapt to students’ age and students’ learning level (e.g. for advanced as well as for learners with special educational needs). Students should conclude about the inherited trait based on the gene combinations. Then they should draw and colour the traits on the pigeon. Students will make a picture of the pigeon out of the paper model according to their obtained genes.

(D17) Smart farming, D. Dinev (BG)

Institution: “Vasil Levski” profiled high school

Subjects: Physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, computer science/ICT/IT, technology, engineering, astronomy, health education, environmental protection, economics, fine arts, entrepreneurship, English

My project on the topic smart agriculture includes: 
1) Control of drip irrigation and precise plant nutrition; 
2) Microclimate management in greenhouses; 
3) Sensors – for soil, water, light, moisture, for temperature management; 
4) Software platforms; 
5) Communication systems – based on a mobile connection; 
6) Technologies for locating – GPS; 
7) Robots; 
8) Platforms for analysis and optimization

(D18) Paper, brush and colors straight from nature, T. Lauronen & M. Aho (FI)

Institution: Forssa School of Fine Arts for Children and Young People

Subjects: Chemistry, science, visual arts, sustainable development

At the beginning of the autumn term, we encountered a problem in class. We didn’t have any paper, brushes or colours to make artwork. We went on a trip to the nearby nature to save the situation. We gathered materials to make natural colours and brushes. During the trip, we identified berries and plants and learnt about their properties with the help of the iNaturalist app. By researching and experimenting, we came up with good colours and found suitable materials for brushes. This time we sped up the project and ended up making the paper out of recycled and donated egg cartons. Older pupils can also make paper substitutes from natural materials, e.g. nettle.

(D19) Physics on Cards, L. Sobinovská (SK)

Institution: Primary school Karloveská 61

Subjects: Physics

Based on the idea of the original Brainbox, I developed my own version of the game called Physics on cards. Physics on cards is an educational game that mainly focuses on topics of physics and can be used in teaching this subject in primary school. The game is ideal for revising subject topics, but also for developing and acquiring factual knowledge. This version of the game also has illustrations on one side and total of six questions on the other side. So far we have created ten playing cards covering the topic of force and pressure in liquids. In the future, we plan to expand this version and cover more topics. Those will correspond with the current learning programme of physics in Slovakia.

(D20) Smart Metal Rally, A. Karassaari, H. Littow & O. Lie (NOR)

Institution: Askim Upper Secondary School & Keminmaan keskuskoulu

Subjects: Chemistry, computer science/ICT/IT, drama

Smart Metal Rally engages 15-18-year-old students in an interdisciplinary study of understanding the role of metals in IT-related products. Guided by chemistry, IT, and drama teachers, students from Finland and Norway use Slack and Trello for collaboration. The project unfolds through online sessions and subject-aligned curricular tasks. Chemistry explores key metals vital for modern technology, IT discusses the ethics of sourcing them, and drama uses this information in an AI-assisted performance. Students actively broaden their understanding of the use of metals, ethics, and AI across disciplines, while acquiring collaboration skills that transcend the classroom.

(D21) Smart Wall, I. Axyonova (KAZ)

Institution: Branch Nazarbayev Intellectual School of Physics and Mathematics in Taraz

Subjects: Biology, mathematics, computer science/ICT/IT, art

The SMART WALL project aims to create an accessible educational environment in the classroom for students with different needs and levels of learning based on dynamic modelling of living systems. The idea of the project is to use felt fabric as a wall and when creating educational materials. SMART WALL helps students: in studying complex topics in biology; develop academic English; create STEAM projects; develop empathy and a culture of inclusion in the process of creating educational materials for blind and visually impaired children. Five schools in the country are using SMART WALL ideas. The project involves low financial costs and can be financed by the school.

(D22) STEAM geometry in straw gardens, I. Tavoraitė & J. Badaraitė (LT)

Institution: Engineering Lyceum of Vilnius Gediminas Technical University

Subjects: Mathematics, computer science/ICT/IT, engineering, science, art, Lithuanian language

Sodai, roughly translated as gardens, is a fun way to explore geometric mathematical solids, construction engineering, folk art and natural materials through a beautiful, sculptural by-product! At the end of 2023, the Lithuanian cultural heritage of straw garden making was added to the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The project focuses on experiential learning by handcrafting these straw gardens. The activity enhances the understanding of geometric concepts in 3D space through a unique and culturally rich experience. It increases students’ motivation and supplies a meaningful context to geometrical exploration.

(D23) STEM-orientation for high schools, A. Aroluoma (FI)

Institution: University of Jyväskylä

Subjects: Mathematics and science

STEM-orientation for high schools is a project led by Faculty of Mathematics and Sciences (JYU). Eight high schools from northern Central Finland are involved in this project. The purpose is to increase interest to study STEM subjects and to support students in their studies. Students from different schools form peer support network that meets regularly online with Science education Specialist. The project also makes the university visible for high school students in a new and easily accessible way. Through multidisciplinary activities, the connection of the STEM subjects not only to each other, but also to other sciences such as skills and art subjects and humanities becomes clearer.

(D24) Tangible Statistics, A. M. Lisotti (IT)

Institution: IIS Cavazzi

Subjects: Mathematics, science, statistics

As data is exponentially growing, its communication is a key concern for Civil Society. From data visualisation to Data Physicalisation different options are explored to deliver data through multiple sensory channels thus enhancing everyone’s cohmprehension. Sonification; interactive Data Art with realtime microcontrollers data-flows; mapped and 3D printed georeferenced data; AR models for data-journalism and many more. All of them  have a potential for inclusion and interdisciplinar applications, equipping students with transversal competences and a wealth of digital free tools. They can all also be easily implemented online for distance education, flipped classroom and project-based work.

(D25) Technical analysis of illicit substances, L. Lavoie (CA)

Institution: École secondaire Casavant, Centre de services scolaire de St-Hyacinthe

Subjects: Mathematics, engineering, science

The learning sequence takes students in a role play where they have the responsibility of analyzing objects seized by the Canadian Customs as recruits for technical analysis of illicit substances. They have to put into practice the concepts of characteristic properties, acidity, basicity, melting point and boiling point in order to determine the nature of the seized objects. The project takes place over six courses where the students have time to explore the nature of properties as well as learning how they can be tested. also have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the concept of vade mecum through looking for theoretical values against which they compare their lab results.

(D26) Warm-ups and stand-ups are a success for everyone in math, A. Jansson & H. Dalivin (SE)

Institution: Gröndalsskolan, Nynäshamn

Subjects: Mathematics

Warm-ups, the routine involving 8-10 low-prestige questions, lead to a reduction in math anxiety and foster a feeling of success at the beginning of every lesson. Additionally, ‘Stand-ups,’ where students collaborate on whiteboards, encourage collective thinking in both speech and writing, enhancing each student’s communicative skills. This approach is effective regardless of the students’ pre-understanding, serving as a method for language development. These differentiated methods, when incorporated into the routine, contribute to students believing in their math abilities and striving for higher goal achievement.

(D27) The math week, B. Kirešová (SK)

Institution: Primary school Stanicná 13, Košice

Subjects: Mathematics, computer science/ICT/IT

Children like to demonstrate their creativity, different skills, original logic and especially spontaneity, as long as they are given a suitable space. We have been implementing Math Week at lower secondary school level for several years. During one week, we use various non-formal education activities, logic games and competitions to increase interest in mathematics. An overview of activities and evaluations is available online and continuously updated. At the stand, I will present a series of the most popular activities like Morning warm-up, Tasks for every day, Math defense game, Become a Teacher for a Moment, Rubik’s cube competition, Logic games, Math escape room.

(D28) The Sustainable Society of the Future – Theme Period for High School Students, T. Mölläri, S. Karvinen, T.-J. Supi & M. Mäkinen (FI)

Institution: Lauttasaari High School for International Business

Subjects: Biology, business, sustainable development, social studies

The theme period is a module of six courses: compulsory courses in social studies and biology and school-specific courses – Making the Future, My Research, Sustainable Business, and Life Skills. The aim is to study the laws of society and ecosystems in a practical way, with a week’s excursion and short visits to demonstrate how entrepreneurship affects the state of the environment and species, and how the environment affects the profitability and opportunities of business.
Students design utopias, prepare ecological studies and recognise their strengths and future prospects of companies, which helped students to develop their own studies and business ideas. “Great way to study. Everything was essential!”

(D29) Shine some Light on Physics, V. Mačkić (RS)

Institution: Ivan Gundulic Primary School

Subjects: Physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, music, ecology, social skills

With this project we will present five different integrative workshops that have a common thread: developing critical thinking while solving problem tasks through the experiments which connect our surroundings and science. The students will be able to understand the laws of physics in an interesting way, through games and the use of simple and available materials.
LIGHT – light is energy, colour of light, movement of light, source of light, shadow. SOUND – acoustics, vibrations, oscillation, vacuum, volume, height, colour, speed.
OPTICS – optical instruments, connection with light, reflection, mirrors, lenses.
FORCE –  interaction, stretching, bending, deformations, friction, resistance.

(D30) Astronomical table of Copernicus, M. Grygiel (PL)

Institution: Mikołaj Kopernik High School

Subjects: Physics, mathematics, astronomy, geography, history, philosophy, literature

Physical and astronomical phenomena are usually presented in school in isolation from history. The astronomical table of Copernicus is an interdisciplinary project. The purpose of the project is to present the scientific gnomonic-reflection method, used in the castle in Olsztyn (Poland) by Nicolaus Copernicus and to check whether this method can determine the solar equinox days at the present time. To repeat Copernicus experiment it is necessary to choose a place to carry out observations, so that the window of the rooms are facing South. The necessary apparatus: a mirror on a stand, put (glue) paper on the wall. Measurements should be made at least three times a day for two months.