The STEM-ID courses are 18-week integrated connections courses that can be taught alongside core math and science classes, either as Engineering and Technology classes or as general STEM classes. Each course can stand alone, but research shows best results for students who take the course for multiple years.
The curriculum requires that students use the engineering design process within a problem-based learning context, and that they actively practice foundational mathematics skills and NGSS-aligned scientific practices to solve engaging challenges.
Each course is divided into a series of four challenges entitled the Data Challenge, Systems Challenge, Visualization Challenge, and Design Challenge. The first three build different skills, and the fourth is a multi-week design challenge that pulls the experience together.
All courses in the multi-year sequence follow a similar trajectory and incorporate many of the same skills, but within different contexts and with increasingly more challenging technological manipulatives. By the 8th grade, students render designs in 3D modeling software, use a 3D printer to create prototypes, test their product, and iterate on the design.