STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics)
Create curriculum for innovation and creativity to prepare students for the future
What is STEAM?
This concept is not a new one – consider the work of Leonardo Da Vinci, the first innovator of STEAM. He could do it all-music, visual art, design and inventions. Many educators today realize the importance of innovation, creative thinking and engaging the right brain in science and math activities. Think of the person who created markers that smell like food or tinker toys and erector sets to build and create. What does a Rubik’s cube have to do with music? What happens when a yo-yo has a different design? Innovation is not new. It has just been asleep. It is time to wake up, reignite creativity in our children to be prepared for the jobs of the future. Who knows what lies ahead?
Turn STEM into STEAM
Engaging students through the arts develops cognitive connections that improve academics by fostering innovation and creativity. Turn STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) into STEAM (add “A” for the ARTS) as an outlet for creative expression, inspiration and inventiveness.
Only a few decades ago, the United States was at the forefront of technology. We put a man on the moon. Now our students have fallen behind. Education must change for our students to become competitive in the global marketplace. Thomas Friedman warned in his book, The World is Flat, that the US must work at producing more creative and competitive young people to keep pace with modern technology.
Reported on December 7, 2010 in the Huffington Post:
The United States has fallen to “average” in international education rankings released by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, according to the AFP.
The three-yearly OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) report, which compares the knowledge and skills of 15-year-olds in 70 countries around the world, ranked the United States 14th out of 34 OECD countries for reading skills, 17th for science and a below-average 25th for mathematics.
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“This is an absolute wake-up call for America,” U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said in an interview with The Associated Press. “The results are extraordinarily challenging to us and we have to deal with the brutal truth. We have to get much more serious about investing in education.”
Schools need to take responsibility to develop students who are critical thinkers and problem solvers. Children must experiment, design and create as a part of their learning process. Teachers should have training and program models to ignite the power of inquiry and creativity in their students. The relationships between right and left brain thinking combined with technical and scientific concepts must be taught and practiced. This experiential learning will empower students to understand how mathematics and science relate to the real world, jobs for today and for the future. As well, this curriculum encourages students to use their creativity and innovation to embark on a path for STEM/STEAM practical applications.
Connecting STEM to the ARTS : http://www.edutopia.org/blogs/connecting-stem-arts-jim-brazell