STEAM and the Educational Growth of Children in 2016
William Jackson, M.Ed.
Edward Waters College @wmjackson
Educational Technology, Social Media and STEAM
This blog was originally written in 2013,
much has changed in the opportunities for
children of color and culture to grow and
develop into Nerds, Blerds, Geeks and
In our educational systems nationwide,
where children of color and culture are taught
not just the educational curriculums and
strategies for successfully passing
assessments, educators teach the value of
education by integrating project based learning.
It should be known that the development of
knowledge in itself is not transformative,
the application of knowledge, creativity
and innovation is powerful.
The educational initiatives of STEAM, STEM,
STREAM CSTEAM and even STEM2 are
vital to prepare youth for current and future
careers. Students of color and culture
do not care about statistics, graphs, charts,
Excel spreadsheet. They want to know how
they can use these skills to provide for their
families and build their communities.
This is why educators at all levels must
make their instruction relevant and apply
to real world situations not to pass a
mandated state assessment.
The investment of STEAM Science
Technology Engineering Arts Mathematics
can be seen in the development of hand-on
projects, collaborative and cooperative learning
activities that show the significance of
hands-on learning that is interactive and
educationally engaging for students.
These activities are also the precursors to
career selections for students that have
unknown talents and abilities to do great things
in this world. Teachers cultivate and nurture
critical thinking skills in their students.
Society can no longer teach with old school
traditional lecture methods. Today’s students
are interactive, they need to be engaged, involved
and even entertained. Instruction in schools can
no longer be teacher centered in its direction to
teach concepts, strategies, standards, there needs
to be a transition to student centered learning in
today’s schools even in higher education. Tech
labs must be available to allow individual
research and learning, group learning and gender
History = Alton Yates Future = Taylor Richardson
Both of Jacksonville, Florida
STEAM/STEM integration encourages students
to be the center of attention in learning, the teacher
sets the parameters and learning objectives to
accomplish tasks that are fashioned
to teach diverse areas of interactive learning.
The students understand that learning can be
fun first, engaging second, and transformative
third. The connections from Science
Technology Engineering Arts and Mathematics
involving higher order and critical thinking skills.
When incorporating the “R” for Reading students
apply comprehension for understanding. Instead
of hearing from teachers that they “better”
understand what is being read, there is a “reason”
why comprehension is important.
Chinua Achebe, Nigerian author states that
children should never be afraid of reading and
should be excited to go to libraries and museums.
It is the responsibility of parents to make this a
See Dick and Jane run up and down a hill do not
cut it, students could be building bridges, rockets
or robots along with reading what is the speed of
Dick if he falls down the hill or how fast would
Jane have to run to catchup with Dick as he rolled
down the hill. Reading is important to follow
directions to complete tasks, but teaching it like a
Dick and Jane book ruins the excitement and
Real world experiences in careers shows children
of color and culture to see past traditional careers,
they get a chance to see what the future potentially
STEM2 (squared) integrates Medical aspects
and CSTEAM incorporates Computer
initiatives. Students are learning that they can be
Geeks, Nerds, Blerds, and start their own businesses.
Society cannot afford to dumb down learning because
early childhood students are watching Star Wars,
Star Trek, Guardians of the Galaxy, Avengers,
Iron Man, and Captain America, they’re wondering
how they too can build robots, drones, spaceships
and have an influence in the world.
News reports from NPR show that the direction for
careers is changing and students must be exposed
to information and resources to keep up with change.
The Airforce is in need of drone pilots, children
of color and culture and women need to consider
careers that open new directions and demand new skills.
What was once thought of as out of bounds for
children of color and culture are now new
opportunities to receive high tech education and
advancement not seen in the last 10 years.
Parents, especially parents of color and culture must
understand the future implications
in employment and careers for their girls and boys.
Higher educational access to resources that
encourage community engagement and a higher level
of interaction and educational attainment
for students that involve learning outside the classroom
and involved in the community.
If parents do not want their children to return home
after graduating from college or stay home
after high school graduation they must continue
to be parents, to guide their children far away to start
careers that allow for occasional visits. If you have adult
children, you understand the importance of stable,
progressive careers that allow your children to grow
away from home. To spread their wings to fly….
The choice is simple for 180 days of school, learning,
growing, exposure and adapting
to new ideas for development, teachers must
challenge their students engagement and
build their intellectualism and how to apply
their intelligence. There should not be any
consideration of color, culture, gender of lifestyle.
All students matter in any educational
arena and teacher must be prepared to teach the
diversity of our world.
STEM – STEAM – STREAM – CSTREAM – STEM2