After school programs or clubs are often designed to reinforce and complement a regular academic program, but are also ideal for teachers and students to create and learn with low stakes and lots of fun. After school programs can also provide a time to specifically focus on important 21st century skills and academic enrichment through STEAM and coding.
As we continue to face ever-changing demands in the 21st century, it is more important than ever that we provide our students with opportunities for success outside of the classroom. After school programs focused on soft skills, career readiness, literacy skills, social skills and more help students learn new skills and stay engaged.
What is Meant by 21st Century Skills and Learning?
The 21st century skills are a set of abilities that people need to develop in order to be successful in this technological age. In our information-based economy, people in the workforce need to think deeply about issues, solve problems creatively, learn ever-changing technologies, and more.
In order to prepare students for their future, education must shift to allow for practice and refinement of these 21st century skills, and traditional learning methods will not be enough. Instead, learning using technology in meaningful ways to problem solve, communicate, collaborate and grow will be key.
The Future of Work: Career Readiness
The future is now, and it’s time to prepare students for the jobs of today. A 21st century after school program is the perfect opportunity to help them achieve success in their careers! A STEAM and coding after school program or club can focus on explicitly teaching 21st century critical skills to prepare students for their futures.
In Future Of Work: What Job Roles Will Look Like In 10 Years, McKinsey Global Institute’s research report has highlighted the top three skill sets workers will need to secure the best careers for the future.
- Technological- This includes everything from basic to advanced IT skills, data analysis, and engineering.
- Social and emotional- These include advanced communication, empathy, to be adaptable, and the ability to learn continuously.
- Higher cognitive- These include advanced literacy and writing, critical thinking, and quantitative analysis and statistical skills.
Each of these top 3 career and technical skills are effectively taught through STEAM and coding solutions. Introducing STEAM and coding concepts to children in the classroom or through a progressive after school program allows you to prepare students with the knowledge they need to be successful throughout life – no matter what field they choose!
Done-for-You STEAM and Coding After School Solution
While teaching 21st century skills sounds ideal, educators have little time for preparing standards-based lessons for an after school program or club. That is why SAM Labs has a done-for-you after school club solution. Everything needed to effectively teach is prepared and ready to be implemented, and no experience is needed for teachers or students!
With SAM Labs, students of all ability levels will love coding their own creations while learning the foundational skills for the technology of tomorrow. After implementation, many districts will see an increase in career and technical education (CTE), robotics, and coding classes in middle and high school in the future.
We are ready to take the next step with you! Read more about After School Solution here: https://samlabs.com/us/solutions/afterschool/
Want to hear more about starting a STEAM or coding after school program or club? Check out this webinar for great tips and motivation.
Shaunda Douglas is a former educator with over 15 years of experience in all levels of education. In her free time, she reads, plays with her dogs, watches baseball, and loves a good nap.