STEAM is a movement championed by Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and widely adopted by institutions, corporations and individuals in education. It stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics. The objectives for STEAM include: ‘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 thought behind this is that “where science ends, art begins,” as described by early photography Charles Negre, (1851) “When the chemist has prepared the sheet, the artists directs the lens and the three torches of observations, feeling and resaoning guide the study of nature; photography invokes effects that make us dream, simple patterns excited us, powerful and bold silhouettes that surprise and frighten us….” said Negre in 1851. When he first began experimenting with the chemistry behind photography, the physics and mathematics of optics, and the engineering principles of both camera design and the architecture he photographed.
STEAM education is gaining steam among teachers in all subject areas. It reflects both the international movement to add the arts — which can include the fine, language and musical arts — to STEM education and the school's desire to help students pursue a different kind of 3D: discovering, designing and developing. the concept by asking people what they do for a living, then pointing out that their careers incorporate all of the subjects that they studied in school. Rather than teach those subjects in a vacuum, STEAM programs integrate them in an inquiry-based, hands-on curriculum that more closely aligns with what students will experience in college and the workforce.
Game-Based learning is an emerging trend in education that is centered around making learning more fun. Humans are wired to learn and play. Schools need better use of technology, not just more of it. By using games, teachers can give constant feedback, discipline, and rewards. Gaming is characterized by the use of constant feedback through progress bars, leader boards, and level up systems. The use of badges for performance is gaining ground in many content areas.
Some teachers are even having their students design video games as part of the project-based learning idea. Gamification is definitely a buzzword in education. Students study game design, and even take classes in game design. As game based-learning becomes more prevalent in education, researchers are interested in how game structure mirrors the learning process. In many games, students explore ideas and try out solutions. When they learn the skills required at one level, they move up. Failure to complete the tasks is reframed as part of the path towards learning how to conquer a level. In a recent survey by Joan Ganz Cooney Center, half of 505 K-8 teachers said they use digital games with their students two or more days a week and 18 percent use them daily.
The genius hour is an opportunity for students to explore their own passions. This movement allows students to explore their own passions and encourage creativity in the classroom. It provides students a choice in what they learn during a set period of time during school. The genius-hour website doesn’t attribute the idea to any one person saying, “it is not easy to determine where the idea was originally created, but there are at least two events that have impacted genius hour.”
The site describes Google, which allows its engineers to spend 20% of their time to work on any pet project they want. Google’s policy has worked so well that they claim 50% of their new products have been created during this creative time period. Gmail and Google News are products of the Genius hour at Google, developed by passionate developers. Another event that is attributed to the genius hour is from the book Drive by best-selling author, Daniel Pink. In the book, he writes about other corporations that implement the genius hour and see innovation as a result.
Implementing the genius hour in the classroom creates a place for passion-based learning. Students can set their own goals for projects. Allowing students 20% of their time to invest in something they are passionate about but there are usually some guidelines. There are no limits (within the parameters of safety and legality. The topics that are brainstormed to pursue should not be Google-able. The teacher’s role is to guide, coach, and facility so that students can discover; teachers are not responsible for finding resources or providing a defined result. The process does not have a true final product, but rather a place where the student can share with the world. It should allow the student to connect with the world to deeply understand their passion and discover other passions in the process.
These emerging trends in education will have a broad impact in the years to come as technology, science, gamification, and art continue to influence education. I'm still in the 'thinking' stage of how to implement the Genius Hour, Gamification, and STEAM into my content, but I am open to any suggestions or ideas. The amazing Tricia Fuglestad has organized all of her STEAM art lessons onto one Smore flyer, which is a great resource!!