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November 16, 2017 05:06 PM

STEAM² Learning Adds Art And Medicine

Rapid City, SD

A lot of schools are putting more of a focus on STEM learning. It combines science, technology, engineering, and math. Rapid City Schools are taking it a couple steps further. It's called STEAM-squared and also includes art and medicine.

"We're learning about circuits and testing what electricity can go through and what it can't go through so we're trying out different things like paper clips and nails and rubber bands and wood," Matthew Haas, 3rd grade said.

While Matthew Haas and his classmates are having fun with the project, the 3rd graders are also learning.

"STEAM squared is a fun initiative, it's all hands on learning, hands on activities," Ashley Skavang, teacher at Corral Drive elementary said.

"The development of a Steam squared blueprint for our schools at every level, elementary, middle, and high school is part of our 21st century learning goal in our new strategic plan," Lori Simon, RCAS Superintendent said. "We have encouraged classrooms and schools to try new, innovative things, and STEAM is one of those areas that is already kind of underway with some pilots in some schools."

At Corral Drive Elementary, students have "STEAM time" for an hour every week. 

"We are building bridges out of popsicle sticks and we're limited with 200 wood popsicle sticks and we made a design last week of what we want to build," Raygan Bonnette, 5th grade said.

Letting students get creative with learning.

"What it does is really make those important connections between all the subject areas so that the learning becomes more relevant as well as more engaging," Simon said.

And that engagement could lead to a future career in a "STEAM" related field.

District leaders hope to have STEAM Learning for every student in all grade levels in the next couple years.


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  • Elementary
  • Education
  • Rapid City, SD
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