Integrated STEM Lessons as Model Eliciting Activities

MEAs – Teaching Outside the Box!

CPALMS is your source to integrate STEM lessons via a Model-Eliciting Activity, or MEA, into your classroom. MEAs are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that reveal students’ thinking about the embedded concepts. MEAs resemble engineering problems and encourage students to create solutions in the form of mathematical and scientific models. Students work in teams to apply their knowledge of science and mathematics to solve open-ended, realistic problems, while considering constraints and tradeoffs. Students are challenged to clearly document their thought process by incorporating ELA skills. MEAs follow a problem-based, student centered approach to learning, where students are encouraged to grapple with the problem while the teacher acts as a facilitator. The videos on this page provide an introduction to MEAs and teacher testimonials about using CPALMS MEAs in the classroom.

Although MEAs were originally developed as a research tool in K-12 mathematics education, MEAs have since been used successfully as teaching tools in a range of subject areas and grade levels. Students gain a deeper understanding of the content as specified in the aligned standards and increase their ability to effectively apply their knowledge of the content to solve an open-ended problem. Besides enhancing content knowledge, MEAs foster the development of 21st century skills like communication, teamwork, technical analysis, and problem solving. MEAs typically align to standards in multiple subject areas providing students with a rich integrated STEM learning opportunity. These resources can be accessed in the CPALMS MEA Library.

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