A new STEM to STEAM workshop will be hosted by Georgia Tech in late March, bringing together STEAM presenters and educators from a large collection of universities and groups. Among these attendees is UT Dallas’ own
Dr. Roger Malina. Readings will include books such as Ron Eglash’s African Fractals: Modern Computing and Indigenous Design, and Arts Based Research by Thomas Barone and Elliot Eisner.
Advancing STEM Through Culturally Situated Arts-Based Learning” is a unique workshop being organized by the Digital Media Program at Georgia Tech and sponsored by the National Science Foundation. It will take place on March 28 and 29, 2014, in Atlanta, GA. The workshop brings together artists, learning scientists, educators, and others to explore and discuss methods for increasing participation of underrepresented ethnic groups in STEM through cultural art/design and digital media.
The goal of this workshop is to explore methods for increasing participation of under-represented ethnic groups in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) through cultural art and design and digital media. This workshop will investigate the potential for combining culturally situated design, contemporary arts and crafts, and STEM.
Their workshop will cover the following topics, as detailed by their website:
Cultural Art and Design
This refers to creative production and work by members of groups that are historically underrepresented in STEM and art fields. The term embodies creative thinking and critique, which encompasses the analysis of contemporary visual culture alongside other art forms such as visual art, literature, music, film and performance. Cultural arts are often interdisciplinary and cross-genre.
Culturally Situated Learning and Design
This strategy integrates cultural art and design into STEM subjects. Software applications such asCulturally Situated Design Tools (CSDTs) allow students to create simulations of cultural arts: Native American beadwork, African American cornrow hairstyles, urban graffiti, and so forth; using underlying mathematical principles.
This method fosters the teaching of STEM and other subjects through the use of the arts andlearners become more actively engaged from an experiential standpoint (Eisner, 1994). Arts based education provides an outlet for students to express their knowledge and creativity by engaging all of the senses, thus allowing students to tap into their intrinsic learning styles.
Informal Science Learning (ISE)
ISE is learning related to science that occurs in informal, or out-of-school contexts. This includes informal activities within formal settings. These contexts/settings vary from visiting science centers and engaging with the exhibits and programs offered there, to watching a science program on TV, to researching a topic in the library or online, to participating in structured afterschool programs, and so on.