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STEM Signature Program

Students in DEPCO Lab doing scienceCanyon Ridge inspires the innovators of tomorrow by offering a pre-K through 8th grade STEM education. We incorporate daily STEM experiences through one to one technology, specialized STEM programs, and challenging students to solve real-world problems. We are an award winning school. In 2017 we were the first Arizona school to earn AdvancED STEM certification. We have earned an A label from the Arizona Department of Education for two years in a row and we are proud of our national and state award winning teachers.  We cultivate strong partnerships to bring the outside world into our classrooms. To name a few, A World In Motion, Veteran’s in the Classroom, and Ottawa University work directly with students. Strong community and family support gives Canyon Ridge a feeling of home. 

STEM Description 
  • STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — in an interdisciplinary and applied approach. 
  • Learning experiences focus on real world, locally relevant, complex, open-ended problems that require problem identification, investigation, and analysis. Creative problem solving is highly valued and encouraged. 
  • Students have multiple opportunities to work independently and collaboratively to solve problems.
  • Students are empowered to personalize and self-direct their STEM learning experiences supported by educators who facilitate their learning.
  • Students use technology resources to conduct research, demonstrate creative and critical thinking, and communicate and work collaboratively.
  • Stakeholders including volunteers, community members, local businesses, families, and post-secondary schools support the STEM program. 

Connection to the 3As 

Academics 
STEM education creates critical thinkers, increases science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators. According to the U. S. Department of Commerce, STEM occupations are growing at 17%, while other occupations are growing at 9.8%. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics workers play a key role in the sustained growth and stability of the U.S. economy. Innovation leads to new products and processes that sustain our economy. This innovation and science literacy depends on a solid knowledge base in the STEM areas. It is clear that most jobs of the future will require a basic understanding of math and science. 
STEM is important because it pervades every part of our lives. Science is everywhere in the world around us. Technology is continuously expanding into every aspect of our lives. Engineering is the basic designs of roads and bridges, but also tackles the challenges of changing global weather and environmentally-friendly changes to our home. Mathematics is in every occupation, every activity we do in our lives. By exposing students to STEM and giving them opportunities to explore STEM-related concepts, they develop a passion for it and hopefully pursue a job in a STEM field. A curriculum that is STEM-based has real-life situations to help students learn. STEM activities provide hands-on and minds-on lessons for the student. Making math and science both fun and interesting helps students to do much more than just learn - they develop a passion for these subject areas.  

Arts
In regards to STEM - Music, and the Arts work hand in hand. STEM supports music through the processing of information. Each part of the STEM acronym requires a different type of information processing. In Math the mind must follow rules, formula, and measurements to solve problems. In science, the mind must follow elements, theories, and evidence to solve problems. In Technology, the mind must access, or create technological resources to find and test solutions to the problem. As music, and the arts, produce unique neurological processing of their own, they support creative thinking as well as simultaneously utilizing reasoning from all other areas of STEM, it becomes a critical component to the support of a truly well rounded student. To support STEM, Music and the arts use cross curricular content pieces as well as utilize formats within the STEM processing to solve musical/art problems and/or to build musical/art compositions. STEM supports Music and the Arts through the use of these additional thought processing methods to engage full brain learning and problem solving. All of these attributes serve to best support our future learners in concrete, abstract, and critical thinking processes. 

Athletics
As we move into the future of sports, it is very apparent that the “science” behind success is within each specialty. Pick a sport and the athlete can tell you how science improves performance. Runners frequently use GPS technology, baseball/softball players calculate launch angles, golfers have to adjust for the slope of a green and atmospheric conditions. The list goes on and on. At Canyon Ridge, we are focused not only on teaching students the benefits of good health, but also how STEM helps excel at athletics.