Friday, February 7, 2014

STEAM EmPOWERMENT at Paterson Eastside High School this school year

One of the most interesting projects I am involved with this year as an interdisciplinary artist and educator involves a Geraldine M. Dodge grant to create, develop and implement STEAM Curriculum at Eastside High School in Paterson, NJ.  STEAM puts the A for Art in the middle of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.  This means Art teachers collaborating with science, math, etc. teachers and it can be a very good thing if done thoughtfully.  Officially I have the title of WPU/William Paterson University "Art Professor in Residence"/Art PIR and I work with a highly talented team taht includes:  STEAM Grant Manager and WPU Science PIR, Dina Scachetti;  and Art Teachers, Marilyn Simon and Darryl Jones who are both practicing artists.

What can happen when science and art teachers and WPU PIR'S collaborate?  One gorgeous example is pictured below:  the Georgia O'Keefe Flowers and Bones project done in Mrs. Simon's art class.  Students learned about science (flowers and bones and Georgia O'Keefe's love of nature) while they created these amazing art works.  

Below I am pictured with the Eastside High School Science Supervisor Levette Glanton and we are discussing how a plumb line can help me hang the art works and plastic straighter.

Below is another wall of STEAM art work wall I hung at Eastside High School recently. This art work comes from Mr. Darryl Jones' art class and is student-driven and research based.  Mr. Jones is working with the idea that both the artistic and scientific processes are similar and that if students are encouraged to do research in studio art class, then this learned skill will transfer over to their other classes such as biology or history.

As the creator of the STEAM blog, I found my community activism blogger background came in very handy.  My previous CORD blog and blogging has taught me a great deal.
Moreover, social media proves to be extremely useful as an exhibition, documentation, and communication tool for this Paterson High School community.  Triada