MTCES is committed to bringing first-rate STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) programming to students at all grade levels. We provide all students with invaluable skills and knowledge to prepare them for possible STEM careers in their adult lives. MTCES has received the Governor's Thomas Edison Award for Excellence in STEM Education for ten academic years. In 2018, junior high science teacher Karen Geiger received the William Dahlgren Award from the Society for the Advancement of Material & Process Engineering (SAMPE) for inspiring students in the math, science, and engineering fields.
MTCES has embraced the STEAM movement:
STEM + Art = STEAM
What is STEAM? STEAM is a movement championed by Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) to add Art to the STEM equation. For information on the art program at MTCES, click here.
The school's hands-on science program begins in kindergarten and culminates with the science fair. Students have the opportunity to participate in the science fair during 6th-8th grade (7th grade is mandatory). Our students follow inquiry methods to help them understand the “why” of science. Field trips to local businesses, parks, museums, and festivals enhance inquiry.
Beginning in kindergarten, students study the life cycle and embryology--growing butterflies and hatching chicken eggs in the classroom. Simple experiments introduce students to the scientific method. As the curriculum advances, students continue to use observations to make predictions and test ideas through data collection. Science for Today and Tomorrow (SciTT kits) and other scientific tools enhance the curriculum.
The science fair project truly is a cross-curricular endeavor: 7th graders compose a research paper in language arts, create an experiment and hypothesis in science, populate graphs and data in math, build tri-fold displays during art, format reports in technology, and present their projects to outside judges in the school science fair.
MTCES has a state-of-the-art technology lab and every classroom is outfitted with a SMARTBoard. Students have Technology class once a week. MTCES is a Google School: students have a school email with access to Google drive. All 3rd-8th grade, music, and Spanish classrooms have full sets of Chromebooks. All kindergarten through grade two classrooms share a set of Chromebooks and iPads. The library and intervention classrooms each have five Chromebooks.
Elementary level teachers create classroom centers using curriculum related iPad apps. By introducing Chromebooks, we have provided students with faster computers to log in quickly, utilize all Google docs resources, save information on the cloud, and share documents with their classmates and teachers. Junior high level students are able to create presentations and share documents promoting collaboration on class projects. One such collaboration involves building webpages. Students use the webpages to create a profile of themselves for future employment.
Our students work to understand the mechanics in a few fields of engineering. Students in the 5th grade work in small groups using the engineering design program to create inventions for their Invention Convention. Their research and design process allows them to create a unique invention and present it at the school convention. 6th graders use the engineering design program to build bridges that support a 500 gram weight. This involves researching bridge types and materials that would allow them to create a functioning bridge. MTCES typically partners with local companies that allow students to tour their facilities and learn more about the various jobs available in the field of engineering.
MTCES follows the Archdiocese's Graded Course of study for its curriculum. In grades 1-3, parent volunteers, using set materials work with students on mathematical problem solving. 6th-8th graders have an opportunity to participate in the MathCounts program where they learn to work together as a team to solve problems. They also look at the many different ways in which a math problem can be solved. In junior high, students use an iPad for a one-to-one Algebra program. They also focus on real world math situations like calculating markups and discounts when shopping, measuring and designing rooms, writing equations from walking movements, and graphing data from their own surveys. 7th and 8th graders have the opportunity to embark on an accelerated math skills program that includes the introduction of Pre-Algebra and Algebra.
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