Waterford Institute released its math and science curriculum today in a new, web-based format meant to help schools reduce costs and more easily access and use research-proven, age-appropriate software to teach STEM concepts to early learners.
STEM – or science, technology, engineering and math – education has become a big buzzword in early education in recent years as experts show how positive modeling and early integration of STEM concepts plants seeds for future learning. However, there is a lack of quality, research-based curriculum that tackles topics like engineering and science with very young children.
“Young children are already eager to explore and invent; spend five minutes with a 3- to 8-year-old and you’ll probably field an astounding number of questions,” Benjamin Heuston, Ph.D. and COO of Waterford Institute, a nonprofit education research center, said. “Our curriculum harnesses that curiosity to teach researched, age-appropriate and effective math and science concepts, while also introducing technology.”
Waterford Math & Science is an award-winning, computer-based early math and science curriculum made up of more than 3,000 interactive activities, including science experiments, math games, beautifully illustrated books and catchy songs. The software’s sequencer delivers activities tailored to each student’s individual learning needs, personalizing their instruction path and allowing them to progress at their own speed and ability.
Waterford Math & Science’s entire curriculum is now online to offer schools a cloud-based delivery option. Waterford Reading, a complete language arts curriculum, was also released in the cloud earlier this year.
“Schools only need a computer and Internet to use Waterford Math & Science,” Mikkel Storm, vice president of product and marketing for Waterford Institute, said. “There’s no need for servers or additional hardware, which saves schools significant hardware and maintenance costs.”
With the cloud, product updates and fixes are seamlessly updated overnight, Storm added, allowing Waterford to quickly innovate and respond to customer requests, and ensuring schools always have the latest, best version of the software.
The cloud version of Waterford Math & Science is also 100 percent aligned with the Common Core State Standards required in most states. The software’s math activities and lessons meet Common Core standards, and its sequencer, which determines the individualized learning path for each student, is also Common Core–aligned.
“Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for schools who need to align to Common Core, while maintaining the high integrity of our curriculum,” says Storm. “Waterford Math & Science lets teachers quickly search for lessons aligned with a specific standard, and have confidence knowing the overall curriculum helps children master those standards.”
Other improvements include several updates to the software’s reporting tools. Students are tested and placed in the curriculum at the beginning of Waterford Math & Science, and then progress reports show their path as they advance through the curriculum. The updated reports give more visibility into each student’s achievement and progress, arming teachers and administrators with actionable data. They also include a new area-of-difficulty report, which shows challenges for an individual student or groups of students with similar difficulties.
When used with teacher tools like the new reporting features, Waterford’s Classroom Advantage program, and offline materials, Waterford Math & Science is increasingly used as a core curriculum to help early learners grasp basic math and science concepts, setting them on a path for better STEM success.
Waterford Institute is a nonprofit research center that creates personalized, cloud-based instruction through award-winning curriculum, content and assessment for children age Pre-K to 2nd grade. As a nonprofit, Waterford is uniquely focused on providing accessibility, equity and excellence for our youngest learners to position them for a lifetime of learning and success. For more information, visit www.waterford.org or call toll free at 1-877-499-7997.