Imagination Station and Toledo Public Schools Collaborate for Virtual STEMM Education

New grant offers education for students and teachers; Engaging science videos are accessible to all for free

At a time when the word “virtual” has become a way of life, the need for new online learning opportunities is growing. Toledo Public Schools and Imagination Station are collaborating on two initiatives to support STEMM (science, technology, engineering, math and medicine) education within TPS and beyond.

The first collaboration is a grant from the Ohio Department of Education and Philanthropy Ohio through the Collaborative Fund for Educating Remotely and Transforming Schools that enhances virtual learning opportunities. The $100,000+ grant will be implemented in the first half of 2021 and include four key components:

*   Virtual field trip about “Forces and Motion” for fifth grade students at TPS
*   Forces and Motion science kits for every fifth grade student at TPS
*   “Picture Yourself in STEMM” livestream events, connecting TPS third, fourth and fifth graders to a diverse network of professionals working in STEMM fields
*   Professional development opportunities for TPS teachers focused on new methods for teaching STEMM topics virtually

“As TPS teachers and students have worked hard to embrace a virtual learning environment, this grant and our partnership with Imagination Station will only enhance and streamline the opportunities for our kids to learn about STEMM topics,” said Romules Durant, EdD, CEO/Superintendent of Toledo Public Schools.

The second collaboration expands the use of science videos outside the walls of TPS. Last summer, TPS and Imagination Station partnered to produce a series of 13 videos that bring STEMM topics to life for TPS students – regardless if they are learning in a school setting or virtually. As of today, the videos are available to anyone, anywhere, at no cost. With thanks to TPS, all 13 videos are currently available on the Imagination Station website. The videos may be viewed by teachers in other school districts, homeschoolers, or lifelong learners. Each video is designed to meet Ohio curriculum guidelines for students in Kindergarten through 8th grade, and includes an introduction of a science topic followed by a demonstration and hands-on activity for the viewer to complete.

“These two initiatives enhance STEMM education for today’s students, who are tomorrow’s STEMM professionals,” said Lori Hauser, CEO of Imagination Station. “We appreciate the opportunity to partner with TPS and embrace virtual learning opportunities that deliver on our mission to spark a passion for the sciences.”

“We are going to continue to go after grant funds and help feed these initiatives – we have to be more creative today more than at any other time,” said Durant.