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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

STEM is now STEAM?

STEM is now STEAM?

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I'm told STEM is now STEAM (A for the Arts). I wonder how this came about. Any thoughts on how this will shift the focus?

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Marshall Barnes's picture
Marshall Barnes
Founder, Director of SuperScience for High School Physics

It depends on how you want to approach it. The possibilities are extensive and broad and really only limited by your imagination. I would imagine that if there is not a fully developed art program at your school, that more arts could be integrated into the STEM.

The key is that the arts are suffering in many schools and when the big hype began over STEM, it wasn't long before the art teachers began to say, "Hey, what about us?!" and for good reason. I could go into the entire concept, and how various approaches could be implemented, but then I'd end up writing a paper and this comment section isn't the place to do it.

Reyna's picture

We're looking into this for our school. I'm finding that there are many ways to tie science and visual design together. It'll be a fascinating journey!

Mindy Keller- Kyriakides's picture
Mindy Keller- Kyriakides
High school english teacher and blogger.

In all things education, aren't communication, language, and literacy more pressing focal points? The exception may be technology, which also underscores every discipline. Not much else can get done unless students are willing and able to read. : /

I fully appreciate that we want students to be at the "top", internationally. I just fear that this new "push" is largely competitive and not necessarily (with the exception of technology) in the best interest of students.

Not sure.

Bob Charles's picture
Bob Charles
I am in search of definitions for "Quality Eduction" and "Great School".

Math and Language Arts are tools.
Science, being derived from the root for knowledge, is a methodology for acquiring,evaluating and applying knowledge. So, science doesn't have to be physical sciences. Math and Language skills are required first.
Technology is using tools. The tools change dramtically over 12 years. So, what is really learned is how to deal with "Change."
Engineering is creating technology. Learning to apply knowledge to problem solving :ie engineering solutions. Again, not just physical machines are engineered .. any-thing can be.
Art are the products or "artifacts" of our cultural expression. The highest order learning. We learn how to dream and express those dreams.
STEAM is a great idea if every course/class is on board with integrating STEAM into all that is done.

Roger Morgan's picture
Roger Morgan
middle school instrumental music / music technology

As an "arts" teacher (music), we usually feel as if we're on the outside looking in with the STEM movement, yet, it is very clear from the multitude of studies and research that the arts contribute so much to the development of the child, serving as the bridge between so many disciplines, and allowing the student to engage his/her mind and thought process in a totally different way from the core disciplines. Many of the students on our 8th grade STEM team take our elective in Electronic Music Technology which includes the obvious tech tools which are then used for analysis, sound editing and creating, and composing.

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