**STEM** (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education is a curriculum that focuses heavily on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. STEM schools and programs approach these key educational subjects in an integrated way so that elements of each one apply to the others. STEM-focused learning programs span from preschool through master’s degree programs, depending on resources within a given school district or region.

STEM is a growing movement in education worldwide, not just in the United States. STEM-based learning programs aim to increase students’ interest in pursuing higher education and careers in those fields. STEM education typically uses a model of blended learning that combines traditional classroom teaching with online learning and hands-on activities. This model aims to allow students to experience different ways of learning and problem-solving.

Let’s take a closer look at each STEM element.

**Science**

The science component of STEM education focuses on developing critical thinking and problem-solving skills through the exploration of natural phenomena and the laws governing them. It emphasizes inquiry-based learning, where students actively engage in experiments and scientific reasoning to understand concepts such as biology, chemistry, physics, and earth sciences.

Classes in the science category of STEM programs include biology, ecology, chemistry, and physics. However, STEM science classes also incorporate technology, engineering, and math into scientific studies.

**Technology**

The technology component integrates digital tools and software to foster innovative problem-solving skills, allowing students to engage with interactive simulations, coding exercises, and robotic kits. This approach not only enhances technical proficiency but also encourages creativity and critical thinking, preparing students for the rapidly evolving technological landscape.

Technology classes have changed dramatically over the years. Today, tech classes may include digital modeling and prototyping, 3D printing, mobile technology, computer programming, data analytics, the Internet of Things, machine learning, and game development.

**Engineering**

The engineering emphasizes applying mathematical and scientific concepts to design, build, and analyze solutions to real-world problems, fostering innovation and critical thinking. It involves hands-on projects, such as building bridges or programming robots, that help students understand the practical application of their learning and develop engineering skills from a young age. Engineering classes might include civil engineering, electronics, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, and robotics.

**Mathematics**

The mathematics serves as the foundation for systematic problem-solving and analytical thinking across various fields, fostering proficiency in concepts like algebra, geometry, and calculus. It encourages a deep understanding of numerical data and patterns, equipping students with the skills to apply mathematical principles to scientific and technological challenges.

Similar to science, mathematics is one STEM category with classes that will sound familiar, such as algebra, geometry, and calculus. However, when it comes to STEM math, kids are learning more advanced mathematics at younger ages, with introductory algebra and geometry starting as early as the third grade for some students, even those not enrolled in a STEM program. STEM math incorporates concepts and exercises that apply science, technology, and engineering to mathematics.

STEM initiatives emphasize inclusion, equality, and diversity to find and support talent. Diversity and inclusion boost innovation, creativity, productivity, and revenue in STEM fields. Widespread STEM education helps people gain careers in computer networking, IT, and engineering. These jobs are in high demand, and STEM professionals are in short supply.