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STEM Pre-Academy

Welcome to the STEM Pre-Academy!

The STEM Pre-Academy fosters inspiration and relevance in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics primarily through initiatives, such as teacher workshops, technical focus sessions, and collaborative interaction between middle school teachers and subject matter experts. This teacher-driven multidisciplinary program helps middle school public educators develop and implement research and technology based student curriculum including lessons, activities and projects.

The STEM Pre-Academy is a state-funded program, focused on public middle school teachers in Hawaii.

Latest News

New Technology in a Traditional Art Class

Kapa‘a Middle School Art teacher Julia Sanderl shares her experience using a Microsoft Surface Pro 2 in a traditional art class. Read more...

Thoughts on Chromebooks with Logan Newbill

We caught up with Kapa‘a Middle School teacher Thomas “Logan” Newbill recently and asked if he would share his thoughts on Google Chromebook in the classroom. Read more...

Teachers Get Schooled!

On June 22 and 23, 2015, a workshop on the Engineering Design Process in middle schools was held at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Organized by the Hawaii Department of Education, the Office of Naval Research Project and Educational Leadership Program at Chaminade University, and STEM Pre-Academy, the workshop focused on giving teachers a solid foundation for implementing the Engineering Design Process in their classes. Read more...

Visit the new miniblog on Mobile Devices - Mobile Learning!

We've kicked off a new miniblog on this site and hope you’ll join the online conversation to learn more about the various mobile devices that are now inundating the consumer market and some of which are now being used in the classroom.

Nutrition Researcher Speaks to PE Classes

When science and engineering principles collide, the result can be quite practical with far-reaching effect as students at Jarrett Middle School learned in October from UH Jahren Geobiology Laboratory Research Technician, Josh Bostic.

Josh gave a great presentation to 3 PE classes at Jarrett Middle School on the science behind added sugars in the standard American diet. The students learned that making healthy food choices now will help keep their bodies healthy and free of chronic diseases in the future.

Follow-up Mini Workshop: Water Quality Field Trip to Kualoa Ranch

On Saturday, July 26, 2014, teachers from Waipahu Intermediate, Aliamanu Intermediate, Moanalua Middle and Ewa Makai Middle schools met at Kualoa Ranch Educational Center to participate in the STEM Pre-Academy Water Quality Follow-Up Mini Workshop.

Dr. Marek Kirs, a researcher at the University of Hawaii Water Resources Research Center, shared his research data and insight on water quality in the streams and beaches in Hawaii.

Feature Project: iPad Enabled Digital Publishing @ Moanalua Middle School

At Moanalua Middle School, Language Arts teacher Kathy Nagaji and her team piloted a project with students entitled, “iPad Enabled Digital Publishing”. They drew inspiration from the October 2013 iPad workshop co-presented by STEM Pre-Academy, Hawaii Creative Media, and students from Searider Productions, Wai`anae High School.

The Leaves

Recent Comments:

jolee1: Google Drive is a powerful tool for peer editing, teacher suggesting (... Read More...
edwinjcolon: Thank you @jkuwahara for the opportunity to help you with your #... Read More...
sbrown: Yeah, thanks! Does the overheating occur at any time in particular? Light/... Read More...
spramento: Thanks for sharing this information! I had no idea about the overheating issues... Read More...
kara.suzuka: This is great -- I really appreciate the additional photos, description, and... Read More...
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sbrown's picture

Check out the list of iPad and iPhone apps our teachers have suggested!

Big thanks to @papaya and @thayamichi!

jkuwahara's picture

Mahalo to Edwin from STEM Pre-Academy, Lorna and Brittney from BWS, and Aunties Joni, Anne, and Kehau for coming out yesterday and spending your day supporting the students at Mililani Middle School. They really got a lot out of interacting with you. I even had two students email me over the evening asking which water catchment designs you liked best. Thanks for your support. If there are there any other tips that you folks thought of that might be helpful for us please let me know. Thanks again for everything!!

Feb 22 2016 - 1:40pm

edwinjcolon's picture

Thank you @jkuwahara for the opportunity to help you with your #rainwatercatchment project. We are looking forward to the final outcome of this project. #engineeringdesignprocess

Feb 22 2016 - 2:31pm
kauluwela's picture

Lenovo Yoga 12
I recently been having overheating issues with one of my Yoga 12 laptops. I google it and someone else had the same issue. They fixed it with a bios update 1.07. Apparently 1.08 was causing overheating issues according to this one tech person online. So he rolled it back to 1.07. I was on 1.07 but it was overheating, so I went to the lenovo site and found that the latest update was 1.20. Lenovo made it so easy, all i did was click on Lenovo System Update, get new updates and select all and it updated my bios, video card driver etc.. Restarted it and now my laptop has no heating issues. It's been 3 hours and no heating issues (crossing my fingers). Hope this helps anyone who ran into the same issues.

Feb 19 2016 - 1:05pm

spramento's picture

Thanks for sharing this information! I had no idea about the overheating issues. It's a good thing they had the upates on their website. @kauluwela

Feb 19 2016 - 2:09pm
sbrown's picture

Yeah, thanks! Does the overheating occur at any time in particular? Light/heavy processor load, during sleep, etc?

Feb 21 2016 - 2:19pm
lifescienceswahiawa's picture

Tried out the wave tanks for our lesson on mechanical waves this past week. Despite some problems with the sponges not really absorbing the waves, the students had fun making standing waves, discussing sources of waves, and determining the relationship between wavelength and frequency. I also added a mini engineering activity to it, challenging the students to construct the fastest "boat" or "surfboard" to move through the wavetank. @lifescienceswahiawa #earthscience #wavetank #engineeringdesignprocess

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Photo Credit: Thomas Lee
Feb 16 2016 - 7:43am

Show all 4 comments
kara.suzuka's picture

Thanks, @lifescienceswahiawa!

Do you (or does anyone) have more pictures of the wave tank? I am having trouble imagining how things were placed and used in the wave tank for the lesson. Is there already a built-in "paddle" in the tank for creating the tsunami wave? Or were you using some other small paddle? I'm also wondering about the sponges you used -- where were they placed and how big were they?

If anyone else is interested in doing this lesson or a similar one and would like to have someone to work/learn with, please let me know (I'm new to wave tanks and this content but am inspired by this lesson to learn more).

Feb 18 2016 - 9:03am
lifescienceswahiawa's picture

I didn't take as many pictures as I could. Here is the folder with the lessons, and the pictures.

In the folder is a good description and readings made by StemPreAcademy about different activities.

As for the tanks, there are three of them, each with a paddle built in on one side. As for the sponges, they weren't very good at absorbing the waves, so we added all three of them to one tank to show absorption; place them on the far end of the tank (away from the paddles). I'm curious what kinds of sponges we could use to show absorption better.

Feb 18 2016 - 1:28pm
kara.suzuka's picture

This is great -- I really appreciate the additional photos, description, and resources @lifescienceswahiawa!

Feb 18 2016 - 4:46pm
beckymoylan's picture

I am so happy with my iPads. The students are using them to create presentations on earthquakes. They are making powerpoints, movies, research reports, pictures, and quizes. The students are also using them for science fair projects. Using the dropbox makes my life so much easier for correcting and printing out their work.

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Photo Credit: I took the photo.
Dec 13 2015 - 3:45pm

spramento's picture

That's great! How is Dropbox in comparison with Google Drive? I always wonder which service seems to be better for classroom usage.

Dec 16 2015 - 12:37pm
beckymoylan's picture

I haven't used Google Drive, but I think it allows you to edit. Dropbox does not. So I print out the student's paper, make corrections, and have them correct the paper.

Dec 21 2015 - 10:34am
jolee1's picture

Google Drive is a powerful tool for peer editing, teacher suggesting (correcting) and for students to revise their work. Primarily students with computer assess regularly turn in their lab reports as they are working on them and revise frequently to obtain their desired grade. Students must have a gmail account and create a googledoc(ument). You save a lot of paper, time, resources and extra teaching.

Apr 13 2016 - 12:03pm

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