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STEM Pre-Academy

Welcome to the STEM Pre-Academy!

The STEM Pre-Academy fosters inspiration and relevance in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics primarily through initiatives, such as teacher workshops, technical focus sessions, and collaborative interaction between middle school teachers and subject matter experts. This teacher-driven multidisciplinary program helps middle school public educators develop and implement research and technology based student curriculum including lessons, activities and projects.

The STEM Pre-Academy is a state-funded program, focused on public middle school teachers in Hawaii.

Latest News

Thoughts on Chromebooks with Logan Newbill

We caught up with Kapa‘a Middle School teacher Thomas “Logan” Newbill recently and asked if he would share his thoughts on Google Chromebook in the classroom. Read more...

Teachers Get Schooled!

On June 22 and 23, 2015, a workshop on the Engineering Design Process in middle schools was held at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Organized by the Hawaii Department of Education, the Office of Naval Research Project and Educational Leadership Program at Chaminade University, and STEM Pre-Academy, the workshop focused on giving teachers a solid foundation for implementing the Engineering Design Process in their classes. Read more...

Visit the new miniblog on Mobile Devices - Mobile Learning!

We've kicked off a new miniblog on this site and hope you’ll join the online conversation to learn more about the various mobile devices that are now inundating the consumer market and some of which are now being used in the classroom.

Nutrition Researcher Speaks to PE Classes

When science and engineering principles collide, the result can be quite practical with far-reaching effect as students at Jarrett Middle School learned in October from UH Jahren Geobiology Laboratory Research Technician, Josh Bostic.

Josh gave a great presentation to 3 PE classes at Jarrett Middle School on the science behind added sugars in the standard American diet. The students learned that making healthy food choices now will help keep their bodies healthy and free of chronic diseases in the future.

Follow-up Mini Workshop: Water Quality Field Trip to Kualoa Ranch

On Saturday, July 26, 2014, teachers from Waipahu Intermediate, Aliamanu Intermediate, Moanalua Middle and Ewa Makai Middle schools met at Kualoa Ranch Educational Center to participate in the STEM Pre-Academy Water Quality Follow-Up Mini Workshop.

Dr. Marek Kirs, a researcher at the University of Hawaii Water Resources Research Center, shared his research data and insight on water quality in the streams and beaches in Hawaii.

Feature Project: iPad Enabled Digital Publishing @ Moanalua Middle School

At Moanalua Middle School, Language Arts teacher Kathy Nagaji and her team piloted a project with students entitled, “iPad Enabled Digital Publishing”. They drew inspiration from the October 2013 iPad workshop co-presented by STEM Pre-Academy, Hawaii Creative Media, and students from Searider Productions, Wai`anae High School.

The Leaves

Recent Comments:

lnewbill: awesome advice thank you!
edwinjcolon: @lnewbill What is the diameter of the PVC tube outlet? Looks like 1" in... Read More...
lnewbill: I would like to do this with my class. Did you find this design somewhere or... Read More...
lhashimoto: Thanks for sharing @minna! #fablabmodelmaker #math #kalakauamid. Looks like a... Read More...
lhashimoto: @Haengbok That's such a cool engineering design lesson! Thanks for sharing... Read More...
lnewbill's picture

I am having trouble keep my bell siphon working correctly. My flow rate is pretty slow and I cannot increase it at this point. My only option is to make a siphon that works with my flow rate. Anyone have suggestions? Here is a picture of the siphon. I don't want to go to narrow as I hear this can cause clogging issues once the roots start to invade the siphon area.

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Photo Credit: Logan
Aug 20 2015 - 11:04am

edwinjcolon's picture

@lnewbill What is the diameter of the PVC tube outlet? Looks like 1" in the picture. If you plan to keep the slow flow rate, I will recommend three options: put a reducer fitting on the top of the outlet pipe, change to 3/4" diameter outlet pipe, or add an S shape at the bottom of the outlet pipe using 90 or 45 degree elbows. The idea is to slow the water flow and allow the water to form the seal that creates the vacuum inside the bell. Once this happens, the siphon will work until the seal is broken. In case you are still worried about the roots clogging the system, use a wide bell siphon shield to make the maintenance easier. I have no problem using the 3/4" PVC. If you want to keep the big diameter pipe and there is no space inside the bell for the reducer fitting, add 4 elbows forming an S shape under the grow bed to create to help create the seal. Similar to a toilet. Let me know if you have any more questions. #aquaponics #siphon

Aug 20 2015 - 2:26pm
lnewbill's picture

awesome advice thank you!

Aug 25 2015 - 8:07am
sbrown's picture

There are a bunch of great resources in this article...bookmark now!

Best Resources for New Teachers | Edutopia
lhashimoto's picture

Educators are designers too! Checkout the "Design Thinking for Educators" website for their free toolkit, videos, and more.

Design Thinking for Educators
sbrown's picture

Engineering success often hides in failure and new discovery!

lhashimoto's picture

A fun STEM project we were honored to work on with @sueshonu13 and the wonderful students at Jarrett Middle School, and @bosticj from the UH Jahren Lab. Happy summer vacation to all you teachers out there! Thank you for all your hard work, sacrifice, and dedication this school year. @edwinjcolon #sustainability #jarrettmid #jahrenlab

Public school gardens and sustainable health result of UH teamwork

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