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STEAM Workshop 2016

STEAMShop 2015

ExCITe Center, 10 AM - 3 PM, February 15, 2016

The ExCITe Center was established as a University-wide initiative to better connect technology, design, and entrepreneurship. From the beginning, STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Design, and Mathematics) has been at the foundation of our efforts. 

We believe the framework of STEAM offers the greatest potential for advancing learning at all levels. But at ExCITe, STEAM is more than education. It’s the belief that the creativity and “maker” spirit that is common to both the Arts & Design and the STEM fields provides a relentless source of inspiration and innovation. And most importantly, the convening of diverse perspectives spanning STEM and the Arts offers unique opportunities to share ideas, form new connections, and sow the seeds of transformation. 

The second annual STEAM Education Workshop took place on February 15th, 2016 at the ExCITe Center. The event opened at 10:00AM with welcoming remarks by Youngmoo Kim, director of the ExCITe Center. This was followed by a series of exemplary talks by individuals in Philadelphia representing the incorporation of the values of STEAM in education.

The morning session presenters:

  • Andrea Forte, Assistant Professor, College of Computing and Informatics
  • Ariel Schwartz, Associate Director of Interactive Technology, Philadelphia Museum of Art
  • Brian Smith, Program Director, Learning Technologies
  • Tim Boyle, Founding Principal, SLA Middle School
  • Ellen Fishman-Johnson, Composer and Educator, Springside Chestnut Hill
  • Alex Gilliam, Director, Public Workshop
Opening Speech

Following the exemplar talks was a presentation by the keynote speaker, Philadelphia based artist Ben Volta. During his talk, Volta discussed his work concerning the facilitation of large scale art projects in schools around the Philadelphia area. These unique projects incorporate and explore science concepts as a part of art in collaboration with teachers and researchers. After the keynote presentation, the group broke for lunch and the first round of breakout sessions.

Breakout session leaders:

  • Ben Volta discussing visual arts in compliment to other classroom explorations
  • Tim Boyle on inquiry based learning, its strengths and weaknesses
  • Brian Smith on learning technologies from a learning and industry perspective
  • Ellen Fishman-Johnson on Computer Science Education

In these groups, participants discussed the topics related to the leaders’ earlier presentations.

A large group discussion took place after the first round of breakout sessions. During this time, individuals talked about various topics brought up in the previous breakout session, including the process of developing a STEAM maker space, the value of learning how to code, and how to make the STEAM conversation go all year round, amongst others.

The day ended with a call to action by all of the participants to develop a way to keep the STEAM discussion going. The workshop attendees were then invited to stay and discuss topics with other attendees or participate in the HackJam.

Steam workshop