In insisting there is benefit to the integrated curriculum as it enhances the experiential connections of math and science to the arts, the question of what is good art and what is good science must be asked. Are the criteria the same? If they aren’t (and they aren’t) then how can the connections be justified?
Obviously the criteria used to evaluate an object of art or a live musical performance are different than those used to perform and evaluate a scientific experiment. One seems totally opinion-based and the other fact-based. The truth is that sometimes the opinions come from the detailed study of an art form, and sometimes it is simply how it makes you feel. “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” Some scientists therefore dispute the value of studying music or using visual art projects to learn science. They need exact connections to validate this idea. No allowing for transfer of knowledge. Everyone has an opinion when it comes to a work of art or how they feel about a performance, although may not be asked to justify how they feel. Yet, there is an art to providing a constructive critique based on established reason and criteria, not so different than science. A science experiment follows an established method based on the scientific method (see chart by clicking on link below). How someone feels about the experiment is not relevant.
Click the link and you will find a chart I created to compare the appraisal principles of evaluation in the Arts compared to Science:
- What do you think?
- Don’t we need the arts integrated into math and science to help comprehension through experience?
- Does this type of learning stimulate the imagination?
- Will this curriculum benefit students of all learning styles?
- How does this improve workforce readiness?
- Is it a positive influence to stimulate collaboration and team work?
Learn to design and create by using the skills that math and science teach. Use creativity found through studying and experiencing the arts. STEM needs to become STEAM.
Below is an article by Harvey Seifter on how artists help to empower corporate America. Read about how STEAM is used in the business world.