The Haskell STEM Academy, a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics program is a school wide model in which all students have direct access to technology, specialized software, equipment, and materials to collaboratively research, plan, build, construct, create, conduct investigations, and produce projects. In addition to STEM based learning in science classes, the center of the STEM program consists of our stand-alone STEM or "SmartLab". The SmartLab curriculum, equipment, software, and educational resources are provided by "Creative Learning Systems" and consist of over 230 "Learning Launcher" engagements. These engagements are student centered, project oriented, and product based. STEM projects or Learning Launchers are categorized into eight areas of core technological competencies:
- Alternative and Renewable Energy
- Computer Graphics
- Science and Data Acquisition
- Robotics and Control Technology
- Computer Simulation
- Mechanics and Structures, and
Learning Launchers vary extensively in scope and design. They are aligned to the ELA and Math Common Core and National Educational Technology (NETS) standards and can be cross-checked via the "Standards Tracker." Student teams of two to three work on projects that connect math, science, social studies, and economics, and engage in hands-on activities with programs like Solar Energy and High Performance Homes, Lego NXT control system and software, Westpoint Bridge Designer, Zometool Geodesic Structuring System software, Vernier Probeware for measuring light, temperature, movement, Astronomy and "MicroObservatory", Google Sketchup software, Photoshop Suite and Stop Motion Animation, to name a few. With inclusion in mind, Learning Launchers are leveled, one, two, or three in difficulty and complexity so that students of a range of ability levels can access the curriculum and hands-on learning at their appropriate academic level.