Through various activities such as experimenting with virtual reality and coding video games, the importance of innovation and computational thinking were reinforced this week on campus in honor of the eighth annual Science Technology Engineering Art Math week.
This program, led by science department coordinator and STEAM week head Gina Dunsmore who managed all of the over 20 lunchtime activities, was designed in order to promote certain areas of study and potential career paths.
“It’s not just a subject that students need to pass or take for graduation credits or college credits, but it’s actually a skill set… that truly helps them in their life endeavors,” vice principal and STEAM week committee member Teri Faught said.
According to Faught the event started incorporating art last year in order to remind students that creativity remains a vital skill despite an influx in STEM related jobs.
This week was all about bringing them together under intellectual curiosity.
“It became prevalent that creativity was at the forefront of being innovative and making change,” Faught said. “It’s just a great way to promote STEAM as viable and important subjects.”
On Wednesday, students crowded the quad to engage in over twenty interactive exhibitions and demonstrations, which Faught believes fosters bonding and school culture. She said she commends the teachers, volunteers, and clubs such as the Science Olympiad Club and the Robotics Club for investing their time and giving up their lunch to facilitate such activities.
“STEAM week is another way to bring students together,” Faught said. “This week was all about bringing them together under intellectual curiosity.”
Moving forward, Faught hopes that the STEAM week committee can garner more feedback and continue to make “stronger and more relevant” changes proposed by the student body.
“When we talk about what changes we should consider, feedback should be informed from the most important perspective and that’s our student perspective,” said Faught.
It’s not just a subject that students need to pass or take for graduation credits or college credits, but it’s actually a skill set… that truly helps them in their life endeavors
Senior and AP Computer Science student Hannah Hwang, who assisted math classes with the “hour of code” activity on Monday noticed an increase in student participation and amount of exhibitions.
“I think [STEAM Week] just shows students about the possibilities that come with science and technology and raises awareness,” said Hwang. “I think it’s especially important nowadays because there is a really strong focus to get girls involved in STEAM.”
Junior Arie Rich, the public relations director of the Science Olympiad club, helped with hands-on experiments like DIY lava lamps and crating 3D toothpick gumdrop structures. She adds that STEAM week provides a break from more traditional ways of learning science and math.
“I think it provides an opportunity for students to learn about science outside of class in an environment where they don’t have to be worried about grades,” said Rich. “It’s sort of bringing science to the students in ways that make it really fun.”