What is STEM / STEAM?
The concept of STEM and STEAM curriculum has been around for over a century, guaranteeing students the opportunity to engage in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and more recently, the Arts. The idea of incorporating these disciplines in education originally was known as STEM, which is seen as a more scientific approach, focusing only on the scientific topics. As opposed to an explicitly scientific curriculum, the letter A was later incorporated into the acronym, to include the Arts: humanities, drama, dance, and visual arts. By including the Arts in the acronym, students are now being given a broader range of topics where they are able to critically think, be creative, and solve real world problems. The idea of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics under one umbrella enables individuals to teach, learn and understand topics that correspond to real life situations and experiences.
Why is STEM/STEAM in education important?
The integration of STEM/STEAM in the curriculum of students is seen within all levels of education including elementary, middle, and high school, as well as in post-secondary education. With STEM/STEAM being integrated into their curriculum, students can learn how the different topics within these acronyms compliment each other, and how they work side by side. By educating students on the STEAM fields overall instead of subject by subject, they are able to use all of the information they are learning cohesively and formulate a better dynamic when combining the subjects in the real world. The fields of STEM and STEAM are being taught to students as a means of developing skills that will be reflected within the workplace, as well as on a day to day basis. In regards to the future of a students education and career, the demand for these skills continues to increase. More and more, employees are being hired based on their ability to think critically during a situation while also being creative, as well as use multiple of their skills, hand in hand, to complete a task. As students are being taught these skills on a daily basis in their classes, they are becoming more prepared for what the future awaits.
The Future is Technology!
Our students today are being prepared for the jobs of tomorrow by learning about STEM and STEAM through different programs, such as Project Lead the Way. The workplace in the 21st century is evolving every day, and technology continues to be incorporated into different fields. Just as seen in the current system of education during these unprecedented times, students are learning via Remote-Live Instruction, or are required to bring their own technological devices to school. Homework assignments are now being posted online, classes are occurring via zoom, and technology continues to advance. The technological shift is now being seen everywhere, despite the type of career one is interested in getting involved in. STEM and STEAM careers continue to increase in their demand, and it is important to educate our students on the importance of being well-versed within these industries.