here is an initial discussion
In ongoing studies, Robert and Michelle Root-Bernstein have found that
more than 80% of scientists and engineers surveyed say that arts and
crafts education should be a required aspect of STEM education. The
authors point out it is arts and crafts experiences that gave these
scientists and engineers the thinking skills that led to their
success. These skills include: "observing, imaging and visualization,
abstracting, pattern recognition and pattern invention, analogizing,
dimensional thinking, modeling, body or kinesthetic thinking, manual
dexterity, familiarity with tools, transforming data into visual or
graphical forms, converting theories into mechanical procedures, and
understanding data and experiments kinesthetically and
empathetically". These thinking skills can be fostered in formal and
informal experiences, the authors point out. The most potent effect
comes, they say, in extended and persistent exposure to the art or
craft over a period of years.
They add, however, that research shows that only the following skills
were included in science textbooks above the 8th grade level:
observing, analogizing, modeling, and patterning. Many of the other
skills are not included in the traditional STEM textbooks at all.
Their suggestions include: informing all stakeholders of the
importance of arts and crafts education to STEM education; providing
continuous arts and crafts education from "childhood to maturity";
making these experiences available across the socio-economic spectrum
in both formal and informal settings; emphasizing imagination,
knowledge transfer, and the inventing process in arts and crafts
education; and providing further research into these areas.
Based on the findings of this study and the national need for these
vital innovation thinking skills, what suggestions do you have to
begin an introduction of these skills into your realm?
Lucinda Presley, Robert and Michele Root Bernstein
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