The San Francisco 49ers education consulting venture, EDU Academy, announced on Thursday a partnership with Play Like a Girl (PLAG) to introduce a Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM) education curriculum to PLAG female youth. The program curriculum will launch this June in Nashville, with eventual expansion across the country, and will leverage sports as a common interest point for engaging students in STEAM subjects.
PLAG, the only 501(c)3 charitable organization in the nation providing high-impact STEAM and sports programs to girls in a supportive environment, will sync with EDU Academy to launch standards-aligned curriculum with a specific pedagogical focus on project-based learning and 21st Century learning skills.
"EDU Academy is a company that is synonymous with sport and innovation in the minds of people around the world," said Dr. Kimberly Clay, Founder/CEO of Play Like a Girl. "We are thrilled to work with an innovator like EDU Academy to enhance STEAM and sports education for Play Like a Girl participants in Nashville and across the country."
Modeled after 49ers EDU's successful STEAM education platform, which has engaged more than 210,000 K-8 Bay Area participants in STEAM learning through football for nearly five years, EDU Academy will work alongside PLAG to develop the program's STEAM curriculum. The curriculum will use the fundamental principles of sports as a conduit to increase openness to and pursuit of STEAM subjects and will be aligned to Tennessee Academic Standards, infuse project-based learning and reinforce key life skills for young girls. The half-day, 5-lesson series will contain lessons focused on each STEAM subject that are aligned to a different sports concept, piece of equipment or principle.
"EDU Academy was established in 2017 to carry forward the mission of 49ers EDU by working with likeminded organizations to help young students establish a stronger connection with STEAM through sport, and Play Like a Girl embodies that and more," said Jesse Lovejoy, director of 49ers EDU and managing partner of EDU Academy. "The 49ers and EDU Academy are proud to strategically collaborate with Dr. Clay and her staff to enrich the lives of young women across the country through the power of athletics combined with STEAM education."