Empowering Teachers through Collaborative Thinking Spaces in STEAM
“Today, more urgently than ever, we need to augment our thinking.” ~Julio M. Ottino
“The world faces enormous challenges of unprecedented complexity—problems that intertwine in a dizzyingly interconnected, interdependent, and changing landscape. Few of them—especially those dealing with energy, environment, and social structures—admit clean solutions with clear endpoints.
How can we increase the chances of finding creative solutions? One way is to augment our thinking spaces, bringing in thinking different from our own. Both the number and the diversity of ideas will give rise to creative solutions.” *
Thus begins a perspective put forth by Julio M. Ottino, Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Northwestern University and member of the National Academy of Engineering. In his essay, he argues that creative ideas and solutions lie at the intersection, or nexus, of art, engineering, technology and science and that “Remarkable things can happen when boundaries are removed and our thinking spaces expand.”
GoSTEAM@Tech embraces this vision to promote creativity and engagement in K-12 education by creating spaces where STEM teachers, particularly those focused on engineering, computer science, and innovation, can collaborate and learn side-by-side with art, music, theater and dance teachers. Our philosophy is that teachers, when empowered and given the opportunity to collaborate with their colleagues from other disciplines, can develop creative solutions to many of the complex educational challenges facing our schools. Together they can imagine learning experiences that expand students’ horizons and their understanding of the world of possibilities and create magic in the classroom.