The arts community is feeling left out in recent conversations about STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). Advocates believe that the “Arts” is needed in STEM-based learning.

This concept of “STEAM” is getting support not only from the art and design communities but also federal agencies, including the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Education. Experts believe that fusing arts instruction in science, technology, engineering and math will create a more creative workforce–one that can problem-solve and think outside the box, i.e., Albert Einstein and Leonardo de Vinci.

Recent research grants and workshops support these theories and cities across the U.S. are seeing progress. Examples of success are seen in classrooms where art design is used to help students understand geometry concepts. The ability to “see” and “feel” an abstract concept is critical for comprehension.

“{T}he Philadelphia Arts in Education Partnership, with support from a $1.1 million Education Department grant, is working with city schools to help elementary students better understand abstract concepts in science and mathematics, such as fractions and geometric shapes, through art-making projects.”

Although critics see the benefits of the arts and stem working side by side, they don’t believe it should be integrated in stem curriculum. As the debate continues, STEAM continues to make headlines and gain momentum.

Read more about this story in Edweek.org.

Photo Courtesy: Andrew Spear for Education Week
As the school day ends, students leave the Dayton Regional STEM school in Kettering, Ohio. Student work that combines arts and STEM teaching is displayed throughout the building.