News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

NOCHE

Meaden & Moore

Don Drumm Studios


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Education


More Ohio schools are adding STEM + arts to come up with STEAM
Is STEM education, learning centered around science, technology, engineering and math, missing something?  A new program is injecting the arts in the equation with the hope of spurring innovation.
Story by AMY HANSEN


 
Einstein is art at Hartford school in Canton.
Courtesy of AMY HANSEN
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:
Correction: The E in STEM stands for engineering. Earlier versions of this story gave the incorrect subject.

STEM education -- that's science, technology, engineering, and math -- has gotten lots of buzz over the past few years. But some educators say the arts are what's truly necessary to make students more creative.

StateImpact Ohio's Amy Hansen takes us to Canton to introduce a STEAM school, a relatively new and unproven model that encourages students to innovate, with an artistic touch. StateImpact Ohio's Amy Hansen has more:
LISTEN:What could arts do for science, tech, engineering and math?

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:22)


It’s a week before school starts, and the hallways are packed at Hartford Middle School’s annual open house.

Over the buzz of students, parents, and teachers getting acquainted, seventh-grader Molly Blair tells me she tends to get the same question when she tells people she goes to a STEAM school.

“What’s that?”

She’s ready with her standard explanation.

 “I just tell ‘em what we actually do, what the letters all stand for, then they start to understand it.”

The motivation for STEAM
The idea behind STEAM -- science, technology, engineering, arts and math -- is to find ways to integrate the “A” into all class subjects, believing the fusion of arts and science gives students an edge to create and innovate.

Like STEM, it’s more a philosophy than a specific curriculum, emphasizing connections across subject areas and teaching kids to take what they’ve learned in one classroom and apply it in another.

And the arts should share equal status with STEM subjects, says art teacher Kathy Pugh. 

“It has to be presented to the kids that it’s not an extra, that it is as important of a subject as your math. “

At Hartford, some aspect of art is included within the entire curriculum.  For example, students use using proportional ratios to create life-size models of storybook characters or to design a “dream bedroom” complete with 3D floor plans.

Science teacher Jeff Ferarra is a big supporter of the integration of the two disciplines.

“The real art of science is to have that creativity and to have that interest and that ingenuity to say, ‘Man, what happens if I mess with this? What happens if I try this?’ and dive in. So you have to have this piece there, which I think follows with art in taking that chance.”

But really, that viewpoint isn’t that new in education.

The track record
It’s only been over the past few years that there’s been more of a formal push to emphasize STEAM. Among those leading the way is the Rhode Island School of Design.

It’s been an official STEAM supporter since around 2011.

Director of Government Relations Babette Allina says several big-tech industry players -- like Boeing and Intel -- have already voiced their support for STEAM.

“They talked about STEAM education as highly relevant to their industry, that creativity was sort of at the center at what they’re looking for in their employees.”

But, overall, STEAM as a bona fide education model is still unproven.

Open to interpretation
There are no universal requirements, and in Ohio programs don’t have to be certified through the state Department of Education. Also, implementation can vary by school and teacher, which makes actual results hard to measure.

Martin Storksdieck, director at Oregon State’s Center for Research on Lifelong STEM Learning, doesn’t think there will be a mass movement to integrate the arts with STEM. 

“Once you say STEAM should replace STEM, then you say SHREM should replace STEM, and you put history and political science in there.”

But the STEAM concept has begun to catch on with both businesses and government. A STEAM academy in Texas opened with help from a $5 million grant from Texas Instruments. In Florida, a STEAM school fashion design class is working with NASA to create garments that could be used in space. 

STEAM even has supporters on Capitol Hill.  The Congressional STEAM caucus - comprised of about 20 House members from both parties - was formed to last winter to advocate for more integration of the arts with traditional STEM subjects.

Listener Comments:

STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Not Education! Your first sentence and intro to this article is incorrect. Please correct this inaccuracy.

Thank you!
Michelle B
Engineering Manager


Posted by: Michelle B (Hinckley) on September 8, 2014 7:09AM
Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook



Stories with Recent Comments

Another Big Year for Ohio birder
Great piece about a great movie about great guys!

Cleveland protesters remain peaceful following Brelo verdict
THANK Goodness the Rev Al is headed to Cleavland to bring some civility to thses savage white PO-leece.

Cleveland deal ramps up civilian oversight of police
i would like to see police get mandatory psych evals one a year from out side the department.

The generation gap in care for developmentally disabled Ohioans
I don't understand how a few hours a day of caregiving can possibly help a person who lives with complex/multiple disabilities. Many waiver recipients totally d...

Marijuana referendum may change more than pot's legal status in Ohio
If our representatives would act in accordance with the will of the people things like this wouldn't happen. They dragged their feet and blocked discussion on t...

Area pastors and congregation members protest justice system
I live in Cleveland. trust me when I say the high incarceration rate is due to the high crime rate.

H1-B visa limits inhibit Cleveland startups and tech ventures
End the Indian h1-b visa scam now! Rishi Oza and other Indian operatives continue to lie both about the 'need' for these visas and the qualifications of Indians...

Ohio's attorney general rejectsthe latest proposal to legalize marijuana
i think the ag launguage is money hes talking about drug companies must pay him more than responsible ohio can

PBS documentary chronicles the fall of Saigon through new footage and stories
Hi, Does anyone know the number - in the pbs special "Last Days of Vietnam" documentary, of how many Vietnamese were evacuated? Please e-mail me the answer. T...

Protest planned at tomorrow's FirstEnergy meeting
The problems of the poor and downtrodden have nothing to do with First Energy. They are the result of Republican legislators who consistently reduce taxes on th...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University