Friday, February 07, 2014

STEM to STEAM: Art in K-12 is Key to Building a Strong Economy

"The game is changing. It isn't just about math and science anymore. It's about creativity imagination and, above all, innovation." 
- Business Week

STEM education is an acronym for the fields of study in the categories of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.The term refers to curriculum choices in schools from kindergarten through college to improve competitiveness in technology development - from Wikipedia
Recently, a coalition of educators, artists and scientists are proposing a different approach to science, technology, engineering and math education, commonly known as STEM: add the arts and make it STEAM. STEAM is a movement championed by Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and widely adopted by institutions, corporations and individuals.
The objectives of the STEAM movement are to:
- transform research policy to place Art + Design at the center of STEM
- encourage integration of Art + Design in K–20 education
- influence employers to hire artists and designers to drive innovation
The push to incorporate arts into STEM comes as some districts see cuts to arts education. An analysis by The Center for Arts Education, a nonprofit and advocacy organization that promotes arts programs in New York City public schools, found that city schools lost 69 art teachers from 2006 through 2012—even though the system grew by 304 schools during that time.
A real national movement starting to take shape... in 2012 even Sesame Street is being brought to viewers by the letters S - T - E - A - M . Only a year ago, Elmo was interviewed on CNN about the importance of S -T - E -M.

- go to STEM to STEAM initiative, Rhode Island School of Design
- STEM to STEAM: Art Is Key to Building a Strong Economy (Huffpost Arts & Culture, J. Kamen and J. Maeda
- STEAM Blends Science and the Arts in Public Education (Wall Street Journal, Sophia Hollander)
- Art and Design Matter - RISD Leads Public Forum Art (Dexigner, Levent Ozler)
- STEM to STEAM: Art in K-12 is Key to Building a Strong Economy (Edutopia blog)

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