By Lea Mellerup-Lund (Copenhagen Honours College,Teachers education, Denmark), email:
In school we are taught that Science is about finding the right answers. Technology is something that we use to make our life easier. Engineering is for the really smart people, those capable of making the solutions of tomorrow. And maths? They tell us that it is important, but I school I never met one single teacher who could tell me why.
And don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the STEM subjects, but that appreciation was built outside of the educational system.
The passion for doing better for the next generations have been with me for a long time, but the “how” became inspired in Venice.
At the STEAM+ lab in Venice it became clear to me what we should teach (well we should not teach, we should guide the young people to their possibilities for learning) and show the next generations, and what we should have been taught and shown, already as children but also now in our higher education.
We need more perspective and time for reflection, we need to let the A into our consciousness.
I remember people trying to define the “A” in STEAM (and its not the first time, in my institution in Denmark the “A” is roughly defined as arts), but the A needs no definition, the A is what makes each and every one of us unique and important, it is our ability to work together, our constant hunt for answers, our search for solutions, our empathy and the most important thing to me, our ability to reflect.
But we don’t make time for reflection in the (Danish) educational system.
We teach (and get taught) about problems and solutions, we get a lot of knowledge but we rarely reflect about the impact. Maybe because it takes time? Or maybe because we (and our professors, lectors, and teachers) do not know how to initiate the prosses?
Or maybe it’s because we as educators are afraid that we will not know how to work with the outcome?
To me STEAM became a matter of learning and not teaching, a way of showing all generations and all professions that what they know and do does matter, and so why is reflection in our educational system so important?
Because our impact matters.