Phoenix STEM & Media
PHOENIX STEM & MEDIA
As the technology industry is ever-evolving, multinationals and small companies are on the hunt for fresh talent to add value to their team. The technology industry is one of the most complex around. Everything from artificial intelligence (AI) to programming requires a specific skill set. If children were to learn these skills from a young age, they would have a sophisticated knowledge of the industry they’re entering – giving them the best chance of success.
Skills such as coding not only gives them an enhanced technological understanding, but it is also a fun and interactive lesson to get taught. Children will learn the art of coding whilst developing their collaboration skills, focus, numerical knowledge, and inquisitive mindset.
What is STEM education?
STEM education refers to the integrated teaching and learning of the subjects science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. STEM education is usually presented through hands-on and relevant real-world learning experiences.
STEM is important because our world depends on it. The economy, our general well-being—it’s all backed by science, technology, engineering, and math.
It is well acknowledged that far fewer women work in the tech industry than their male counterparts. Luckily, teaching technology in schools could help this change. Giving both girls and boys equal access to tech lessons will help to bridge the gender gap present in the tech industry.
Why is STEM important?
STEM is important because our world depends on it. The economy, our general well-being—it’s all backed by science, technology, engineering, and math. We all know what traditional literacy means. Literacy is the ability to read and write.
But in today’s digital world, being literate isn’t enough anymore. It is important for children to become digitally literate as well. Children are at a great advantage with an understanding of digital literacy.
In a world which is so connected, children learn digital skills from an early age. Many of these tech skills are essential in the classroom and in the workforce. Almost any industry children move into when they start their career will require some form of digital literacy. Now more than ever, a digital literacy curriculum is imperative. Where we run into trouble is with the use of technology without a clear understanding of its purpose. Children who use social media should understand how it works, who can see it, and what digital footprint they are leaving behind.
Read more in our E-book for a full breakdown.
There’s no doubt that the arts are fun for children. Diving into those finger paints and making a beautiful picture to hang on the fridge is brilliant. Acting in a play is exhilarating. But the arts also help children develop on so many fundamental levels.
The arts strengthen problem solving and critical thinking skills. How do I express this feeling through my dance? How should I play this character? Learning how to make choices and decisions will certainly carry over into their education and other parts of life— this is certainly a valuable skill in adulthood.
In fact, researchers from the Johns Hopkins University School of Education, argue that instruction becomes more effective when educators integrate creative activities and make them central to academic development. Across disciplines, including STEM, there’s room to re-imagine classes with a strong emphasis on drawing, painting, playing music, performing drama, and other creative pursuits. Encouraging students to use their imagination can help them actively engage with new concepts and discover connections between ideas as well as provide advantages for their social and emotional well-being.
It’s never too soon to introduce children to the possibilities of creative expression. As outlined in a literature review from the National Endowment for the Arts, a variety of studies demonstrate the value of embedding artistic practice into early childhood education. Imaginative activities for young learners can lead to better skills in social interactions and emotional regulation.
Lessons in the arts introduce students to problem-solving techniques, which help them to see the world in new ways and provide access to creative ways of knowing. children discover how art can communicate their own ideas and may become interested in creating increasingly realistic depictions and mastering new techniques. By high school, young artists can think critically about their own work and that of others, establishing a unique point of view and a sense of community with other creative individuals.
The National Core Arts Standards provide a framework for advancing students’ artistic understanding. This structure breaks down the developmental stages from Pre K through high school into 10 anchor standards. In each stage, students build creative habits as they learn to:
- Generate and conceptualise artistic ideas and work
- Organise and develop ideas and work
- Refine and complete artistic work
- Select, analyze, and interpret artistic work for presentation
- Convey meaning through the presentation
- Perceive and analyze artistic work
- Interpret intent and meaning
- Apply criteria to evaluate work
- Make art by synthesizing and relating knowledge and personal experiences
- Deepen understanding by relating artistic ideas to societal, historical, and cultural contexts
Pediatrician Dr. Perri Klass outlined the benefits of art education in schools in the New York Times, noting improvements for overall motivation, thinking, and academic achievement. An arts-integrated curriculum that asks students to draw or sing as part of the learning process may enhance their ability to recall material such as scientific principles or vocabulary. Foregrounding creativity can be especially effective for students who struggle to retain information from traditional lectures and reading assignments alone.