Art, in learning, has proven time and again that it sparks creativity in students, strengthens their collaborative skills, develops their observational abilities, and is a powerful tool for teachers.
In this article, we will highlight 7 ways you can incorporate Art into STEM for students’ effective learning.
Make art relevant
The main reason STEAM has gained much traction and relevance in today’s world is because it enables practical problem solving using art.
As an educator, always make the “A” in STEAM relevant by encouraging students to use everyday objects to build something that would solve a problem in their lives.
You could give them assignments asking them to think up problems they experience and ask them to solve them creatively by using common objects they can find at home.
One concept at a time
We understand that STEAM is all about integrating subjects, but it doesn’t mean all of your projects should completely embody Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math. Every single project you carry out doesn’t have to fit every letter of the STEAM concept.
You could begin with what you are already teaching and try to make more connections between the subjects. Explore one subject in another subject and vice versa by using one to better explain the other.
It’s okay to fail
Letting students know that it’s okay to fail is one way of encouraging to ask questions and be daring.
As students understand that some concepts take several tries before the right dimension is achieved, they become confident and tend to want to explore those concepts.
It is in giving students the freedom to fail while supporting them to turn that failure around that you inspire them to learn and explore.
You don’t need huge funds or equipment to inspire creativity and problem solving abilities in students. You can start with whatever resources you have at your disposal.
For example, students can create the prototype of a city with good road networks or build important structural pieces, like hospitals, that are named after them using cardboards.
There’s more to art than painting
Art isn’t limited to design and drawing.
Students can learn vocabulary through theatrical performance by acting out the meaning of a word. This reinforces what you’re teaching them in a more active way.
You could ask them to observe how a fan functions and they could then act out each component of the fan – how the blade spins, the sound it makes when it blows air, etc.
Students are always excited when they have things to work on, especially as a group.
You could take them on tours them ask them to recreate the things that they have seen.
An example is taking them to teach the lifecycle of a housefly using illustrations.
Art can be messy and that’s okay
No doubt, STEAM classes can be chaotic because you’re always trying out new things which require a lot of building and dismantling…and perhaps painting?
Understanding that the process can be a message and going through it with them will enable them to embrace problems.
It is in this in the chaos that the best of ideas are brought to life. Embrace it.
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