Presentation - ECV2022-274
A literature review on understanding children’s (5 to 12 years) 21st century skills development through STEM education
Mohammad Alamgir Hossain, Charles Sturt University, Australia (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Lena Danaia, Charles Sturt University, Australia (LDanaia@csu.edu.au)
Shukla Sikder, Charles Sturt University, Australia (email@example.com)
Background: In preparing children for a rapidly changing world and 21st century social and economic challenges, classroom practices can be focused for shifting their real-life, activity-based experiences. Learners need an improved set of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) skills to make their way in a complex and constantly evolving future and these skills are mostly referred to as 21st century skills, such as critical thinking and problem solving, creativity, communication, and collaboration. STEM education has become a core curriculum area that is used to target and develop students’ 21st century skills.
Aim: This paper aims to review existing literature to explore the development of 21st century skills of 5 to 12 year aged children through the classroom practices of STEM education.
Method: This research applies a narrative analysis using the cultural-historical theoretical lens to identify the key themes, critically evaluate the themes and summarise the findings of relevant studies to help describe the classroom practices used in integrated STEM education that help develop children’s 21st century skills.
Results: A critical review of the literature provides an overview of the various categories of classroom practices (ways of integration, focus on problems, assessment process, etc.) in STEM education. Moreover, the data derived from the studies present the different types of 21st century skills students develop through various STEM learning processes.
Conclusions: The findings identify the different types of pedagogical approaches in STEM activities that help develop 21st century skills (such as critical thinking and problem solving, creativity, communication, collaboration, etc.). The literature review recommends further studies to be conducted on STEM practice and skill development.
Implications for children and families: Involving your child in STEM activities, such as a problem-based activity, will help develop skills such as critical and creative thinking. These skills are often referred to as 21st century skills.
Implications for practitioners: Children’s 21st century skills can be enhanced and developed by implementing engaging STEM activities that are investigative and inquiry based.
Funding: Australian Government Research Training Program
Key words: STEM education, 21st century skills, classroom practice, skills development, narrative literature review
This presentation relates to the following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals: