What's great about STEAM Education?

What's great about STEAM Education?

In the future, what our society needs is not "good students" who can only read books, but comprehensive talents with comprehensive development, independent thinking ability, independent learning ability, study concentration, innovative thinking, hands-on ability, teamwork ability and good communication skills. If students' comprehensive ability is well cultivated, their interest in learning and efficiency will be improved, and their academic performance will come naturally. This is where the STEAM education concept was born.

 

What is STEAM?

STEAM is a practical and multidisciplinary education concept, which is different from the traditional single-subject and book-focused education. The STEAM education concept was proposed by the US government to strengthen the education of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics in K12. STEAM's original name is STEM, which stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics.

 

What capabilities STEAM develops

STEAM at the heart of education concept, is to let the children themselves to complete their interest, and project related with their life, from learning in the process of various disciplines and interdisciplinary knowledge, improve ability, concentration, independent thinking, independent learning ability, creative thinking, team cooperation ability and good language communication ability. That is to say, this educational concept does not pay attention to the education of children's knowledge per se, but teaches children to learn to think independently, discover problems, learn to communicate, and solve problems creatively and with concentration through their own exploration and discovery process.

 

STEAM core Features

STEAM boils down to three core traits: brain training, habit building, and overall development.

STEAM encourages kids to work on projects that interest them and are relevant to their lives, learning a variety of disciplines and cross-disciplines in the process.

STEAM education is a kind of integrated and innovative education, which is developed based on the needs of matching current education with future social development. STEAM aims to solve future world problems by fully integrating science, technology, engineering, humanities, art, mathematics and other disciplines. It aims to stimulate students' curiosity and cultivate their interest in continuous learning.

(1) Brain training, teaching "way of thinking", not "knowledge". It is better to teach a fish than a fish

Take a child making a sandbag in a craft class as an example. The traditional method of education is: the first step, cut the cloth; Step 2: Sew with a needle and thread; The third step, how to collect the needle; Finally, seal the bag and fill it with sand. Is that the wrong approach? Don't. Students can make a small sandbag as long as they follow the teacher's instructions. But can students learn to make other things when they learn to make little hacky bags? Not necessarily.

In STEAM classes, that's not how they're taught. The teacher will first ask the students what the sandbag is used for, leading the students to think about its function. After thinking in this way, students will naturally think about what materials are needed to achieve these realistic functions. Then, the teacher will ask the students to choose the appropriate materials to make the sandbag by themselves. Step 3: Students make sandbags according to their own ideas. After that, students should throw it away, test it, and use reality as feedback.

This is what STEAM education is all about: identifying problems, designing methods, solving problems, and proving results. It does not seek for children to master the knowledge of doing specific things or solving specific problems, but to emphasize the mastery of a way of thinking. Once students have mastered the method, they can apply it to other objects.

(2) "Habit is destiny". The difference between children's grades is often not caused by the difference in "intelligence", but the difference in learning habits. Guide children to develop correct and efficient study habits through interesting knowledge points.

Good habits are self-enhancing compound interest, and small, continuous improvements can make an amazing difference. If you improve 1 percent a day, after a year, your child will have improved 37 times. ((1+1%)^365=37.78) Conversely, bad habits can lead to double self-destruction. If the child regressed by 1 percent a day, then a year later any achievements he or she had made would be close to zero. ((1-1%) ^ 365 = 0.03).

STEAM education follows the concept of knowledge integration such as cognitive neuroscience theory, Piaget's constructivism theory and scientists such as Einstein advocating that knowledge is unified and the world is regular, breaking all disciplinary barriers. The essence of STEAM education is that in a prepared learning environment, teachers lead students to actively explore the world with "science", transform the world with "technology", create the world with "engineering", beautify the world with "art", build Bridges between disciplines with "mathematics" and cultivate students' habit of learning knowledge.

By making students interested in science, physics, art, etc., from the contact of the unknown knowledge began to arouse students' curiosity, to actively explore new things and knowledge, the teacher teaching relevant knowledge, children to understand and express, these processes, and gradually let the children learn by interest to establish a correct habit.

(3) Pay attention to "comprehensive development", rather than "single outstanding". The improvement in academic performance will follow when overall abilities are improved.

There is a classic example of teaching cyberworms in STEAM courses in the United States. The teacher asked the students to buy electronic insects, and asked the students to carefully observe the characteristics of the insect's physiological structure.

This process requires students to understand the abilities, types, crawling speed and strength of insects, which not only includes biological knowledge, but also includes the overall thinking mode of matching structure and function.

Of course, observation is not the end goal, but rather for students to design electronic bug racing competitions. At this time, the teacher asked the students to design different courses modeled after the human sprint race. Each bug has different characteristics. Students must design a track that is beneficial to their bugs according to the characteristics of bugs.

This process involves physics, motion knowledge and design ability. After the design of the track, the rules of the competition should be formulated, and the promotion of the competition should be done. Humanities and Arts are involved here, which is the Arts section of STEAM.