Integrating ARTS into real situations helps generate creativity and innovative thinking. If you look at some of the greatest inventors and scientists, you’d discover that they were also students of the arts. By utilizing both sides of the brain, the left side for logic or deductive thinking and the right side supporting innovative and instinctive thinking, a more creative approach to problem solving can be developed. If creativity, communication, collaboration and critical thinking are all hallmarks of skills needed for students success, then integrating ARTS into STEM is a critical component.
New York Institute of Technology, working with the New York State Teacher Centers, has created the STEAMed initiative. This project is designed to bring awareness and support in STEAM to schools and libraries in New York State. The van is scheduled to make 80 plus visits per academic year.
The goal of the vehicle (designed by the Professor Garfield Foundation) is to engage the stakeholders (school boards, administrators, teachers, parents and students) in a conversation on the implementation of STEAM approaches and curriculum in schools in grades 2-8. Activities focused on Creativity, Innovation and Technology within the context of meeting the New York State standards.
The STEAMed vehicle currently supports these major areas of activity:
Citizen science using probeware,
Electronics and circuits
Maker design and development.
A number of companies have provided support for the effort through hardware and software loans and donations. These include Intel, Vernier, Verizon, Zspace, A+ Technologies, Microsoft, Robotis, Morphi, Makers Empire and PolyCom.