What is STREAM?
STREAM (science, technology, religion, engineering, art, and math) is an expansion of the STEM movement. As a Catholic school, we have a mission to educate the whole child. We have taken the components of STEM and incorporated religion to strengthen each child’s faith journey. The arts are also an integral component in order to give each child a way to creatively express themselves and their newly strengthened knowledge. It also provides them a way to think about the engineering design process with an aesthetic perspective.
A common misconception related to STREAM is that it is a set curriculum. In reality, STREAM is simply a framework for a creative approach to delivering educational standards. STREAM is an innovative way of presenting concepts to students so as to maximize engagement, increase rigor, and to approach problem-solving with an understanding of the challenges and responsibilities of living in an interconnected digital world.
STREAM is also a visual description of how this initiative works. Core areas such as science and math are interwoven seamlessly with engineering concepts. Collaboration, cooperative learning, and dialogue flows amongst students, faculty, and stakeholders.
Why is STREAM important?
In a global economy that is becoming increasingly complex, excellence is not just measured by what you know, but more and more by what you can do with what you know. It is increasingly important to equip our students with skills, dispositions, and mindsets that can make them successful in careers and fields that don’t even exist yet. Solving a tough problem, finding the best answer among many possible solutions, developing prototypes, effectively engaging in evidence based arguments, creative problem solving, working professionally in a team environment, and preparing to defend data are just a few of the skills that are essential to the future success of our students
How is ACS implementing STREAM?
Annunciation is leading the way in the Southeast in STREAM implementation. The Arts in the Classroom Initiative, Arts Captivating Spirits, incorporates the arts into all subject areas. ACS is committed to giving students 21st century technology skills by focusing on computer literacy, coding and robotics. Technology is also integrated into all subject areas to empower students to leverage technology to reach their learning goals. 21st century learning and innovation skills (critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity) are integrated through inquiry-based learning. To demonstrate a commitment to excellence in STREAM, a STREAM Coordinator was added to the ACS family in the fall of 2018. Professional development with a focus on STREAM has allowed for dialogue, networking, and vertical planning; STREAM principles are now evident in all grades and special classes. ACS has been so successful in implementing STREAM because the philosophy of interconnected content areas, higher order thinking, and a focus on empathy and social justice have always been the priority of Annunciation Catholic School.
How will STREAM be utilized in the classroom?
While STREAM emphasizes science, technology, religion, engineering, art, and math, it will incorporate all subjects of learning into activities and comprehensive projects. Even if students are strong in math and science, they will also need to be able to effectively communicate their ideas, both in verbal and written form. Much like the real world, the purpose of STREAM activities is for students to use all their talent, knowledge, creativity, and hard work to figure out problems and solve them. STREAM class will also focus on how to approach problems, how to think critically, how to ask the right questions, how to perform a task with constraints, and how to collaborate effectively with others.
One of the most important components of STREAM is a student’s ability to take what they know and apply it to a problem or task. In problem solving and discussion questions, there will be no one right answer. Students need to learn that sometimes there is no specific best answer and that they have to figure things out themselves. God may not give us clear answers to all our problems, but rather provides us the techniques and mental skills necessary to solve them. In STREAM, students will be taught the knowledge, concepts, mindset, and appropriate tools to complete assigned tasks. However, it will be up to the students to think critically, strategically, logically, creatively, scientifically, and dynamically in order to present solutions.
STREAM Vision Statement: To equip our students with the skills, dispositions, and mindsets necessary in order to be successful in the career and fields of today and those in the future.
STREAM Mission Statement: Employ project-based learning, team-building exercises, and multiple thinking processes to solve real-world problems through the application of knowledge, concepts, and creative processes being taught in every classroom at ACS.