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Calendar >  Learn How Vista Unified School District is Turning Third Grade Students Into Tomorrow’s Innovators

Learn How Vista Unified School District is Turning Third Grade Students Into Tomorrow’s Innovators

By   /  May 27, 2019  /  No Comments


Vista Unified is Turning 3rd Grade Students Into Leaders through STEAM Teaching

Vista Unified third-grade classroom – one local teacher is having success bringing STEM teaching and hands-on activities to his students. 

Studies show that children who experience STEM education (science, technology, engineering and math) early on will be best equipped in understanding STEM concepts later in their academic career. Mathematics and science are in every occupation, every activity we do in our lives. The earlier we integrate STEM lessons into children’s daily curriculum, the better chance our youth will develop a stronger understanding of these skills, as well as cultivate a future interest.

                        While most STEM programs are often associated with high school and college-level development, Kid Spark Education is a nonprofit bringing STEM training and tools to elementary school students in San Diego. Vista Unified School District is the first school system to adopt the Kid Spark Emerging Engineers model, which pairs philanthropy and with underserved schools to help students who need it most.

Kid Spark Education has partnered with The San Diego Foundation to maximize the impact of its philanthropy and help more schools utilize its STEM education model. Through the Kid Spark Education Fund at The San Diego Foundation, the organization plans to provide its program and training to at least 20 more San Diego classrooms by fall 2019.

Elementary schools interested in receiving a grant to participate in the Kid Spark Emerging Engineers program can apply at – https://go.kidsparkeducation.org/emerging-engineers-san-diego.

WHO:              Robert Crowell, 3rd Grade Teacher, Vista Unified

Jena Olson, Executive Director, Kid Spark Education

VISUALS:       Third grade students engaging and playing with engineering sets in a classroom environment

WHEN:            Media is invited to visit the classroom on weekdays between 12:15pm – 2:15pm, from May 21 – June 5

WHERE:         Maryland Elementary School

700 North Ave

Vista, CA 92083

WHY:               With breakthrough technology companies and research organizations, the San Diego region is recognized as one of the leading high-tech hubs and most dynamic economies in the nation. Yet according to the San Diego Economic Development Corporation, many local students are unprepared to complete a degree or receive credentials to enter the local talent pool.

The most effective way to close the STEM achievement gap is to expose young children to STEM subjects as soon as they enter their first classroom and to continue offering applied STEM experiences every year. To address this challenge, Kid Spark Education empowers San Diego educators to teach fun, hands-on engineering programs that help all children, especially those from underrepresented communities, develop the confidence and skills to succeed in STEM and thrive in the 21st century.

Learn how Kid Spark Education is being used in the classroom, as well as how the organization plans to expand its model to all elementary schools across San Diego County.


About The San Diego Foundation

The San Diego Foundation maximizes the impact of your charitable giving. We mobilize philanthropic resources to advance quality of life, increase social impact and champion civic engagement. For more than 40 years, The Foundation and our donors have granted more than $1.1 billion to grow a vibrant San Diego region. Learn more on our website, and consider a donation to the Fund for the Future Endowment which supports San Diego community needs for good, forever.


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  • Published: 1 year ago on May 27, 2019
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  • Last Modified: May 27, 2019 @ 10:56 pm
  • Filed Under: Local

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