Elen Evans and STEM Education
Being a DELTA qualified English Language teacher with over twenty years of experience teaching with the British Council in Italy, Egypt and Spain, and with International House in Portugal and Spain, Elen went on to successfully complete a BSc (Hons) in Natural Sciences in 2017. She was already witnessing the mal-treatment of the world around her (pollution, littering, excessive use of transport and plastic, mindless disposal of waste, etc), and her studies opened up to her the pandora’s box of delights that is the natural world. The damage our species is causing became ever more apparently mindless, something Elen passionately felt needed to change. She went on to found STEM Ginger Education to bridge the gap between subject learning and English language learning: “With STEM Ginger Education, we find ways of experiencing the living natural world through English.”
The best way of ameliorating the environmental catastrophe we are busy creating is by raising awareness of how possible and easy it is to change things. In addition, the best way to learn a language is by doing projects, doing tasks, being interested, being curious and having a purpose, and so STEM Ginger Education combines these, resulting in fun, interactive learning.
STEM Ginger Education writes, finds and develops, projects related to the environment and gives children and adults, a purpose for communicating in English. Methodology we value greatly, aim to develop life-long skills, such as critical thinking, communication and creativity.
Undeniably, global interconnectivity is what is being overlooked as we deal with climate change. We talk about this ‘global world’ yet nations don’t work together, people don’t understand each other (be it due to language or culture). If the young people of today are encouraged to work together, learn about each other and be curious about differences, the future seems so much brighter and united somehow.
CLIL is a current buzzword in the world of language education, yet at STEM Ginger Education, we feel its implementation needs drastic re-evaluation and reframing, to ensure that the value of learning subjects through other languages is not lost in the maelstrom of overambitious teaching (often culminating in ineffective learning). At STEM Ginger Education, we offer personalised support for teachers required to teach through English (when it is not the teacher’s mother-tongue) to ensure that content is not lost and the learning experience remains at the fore.
The Environmental Crisis – A global issue
We drop plastic waste on the street in Spain and it ends up on a beach in Indonesia; the excessive production of greenhouse gases causes global temperatures to rise, ice-caps in the poles to melt and low-lying islands to become inundated; the Covid-19 Pandemic has swept around the world relentlessly, from nation to nation.
Why we care
Travelling around the world; meeting people from a variety of cultures; seeing how the old and young are valued so differently from east to west; learning languages; watching and listening to how people communicate; observing the slow degradation of the natural world; living amidst a society that values financial gain and ticking boxes over personal well-being; experiencing how health in western medicine is simply a physical matter, and the emotional is disregarded …
“We know how desperately things need to change, how ugently we need to act, and how different cultures need to share and learn from one another.”
Feeling more and more confused about what can be done to help out: recycling, travelling by train rather than flying, using less plastic, going vegan – isn’t that enough? As we mulled over solutions to this environmental crisis at STEM Ginger Education, we pondered:
- These actions barely scratch the surface; how can we act so as to make a sustainable impact on a global scale?
- How can we take effective action when there are so many mixed messages flying around?
- Why should people on one side of the globe, care about what happens to people they will never meet on the other side of the globe?
We don’t have to treat our planet the way we are treating it – we have options and, moreover, we know these options. There is hope. We want the younger generations to grow up on a planet that is kind to them, that they are kind to and treat with respect, because that is what they have always seen happening.
What is STEM?
What is STEM?
The core subjects:
We need to work together
It is clear as day that we are all in this together, we share this planet and we need to look after it…together.
Getting children from around the world communicating and giving them a reason to do so, The Environmental Warriors’ projects and Global Citizens’ courses focus on a variety of areas of STEM. This knowledge will empower people and give them more control over the future, THEIR future, as well as awakening curiosity and interest in this wonderful planet we all call ‘home’.
Different environments, different languages, different cultures BUT the same planet, the same atmosphere, the same oceans and the same skies.