I came across some cartoons that show different views on education. These cartoons are great examples of what we DON'T want a unit to look like and I use them as inspiration, along with our readings, to explain what a STEMS^2 unit should look like.
Designed with a purpose and organized using instructional scaffolding strategies. The unit is made to use immediately in the classroom.
A unit should incorporate students' cultural funds of knowledge and provide multiple perspectives.
Flexible enough to evolve with the learning styles and needs of each student because there are multiple ways of learning.
All aspects of STEMS^2, including the arts, should be present and integrated in every lesson (content areas should never be separated).
Other aspects of a unit that should be considered:
Target audience will greatly impact each unit. How often will you see the class? What's the size of your class? How long is each class? What grade-level? Is your unit for a content specific class?
Based off of Glatthorn's The Nature of Curriculum, a unit tends to last about one to three weeks. Lessons are subsets of units that tend to last from about 20-60 minutes. When I develop lessons, my ideal time for a lesson would be about 45 minutes.
Kumu Kaʻai previously taught at Kānehūnāmoku Voyaging Academy and Hawaiian Studies at Wilson Elementary School to K-5 students.