Believe it or not, next Monday will kickstart Sesame Streets 43rd year. They’re older than I! (but I won’t say by how much). I saw the executive producer discuss some changes in their programming curriculum, and what she said very much piqued my interest. She explained how they were beginning to incorporate STEAM skills in Elmo, the Musical.
Don’t know what STEAM is? It is the acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math. Many of you may be familiar with STEM, as I have been, but this is the second time within a few months that I heard of the Arts being added. For those unaware, many schools highlight STEM in the classroom and some schools, including here in Grand Rapids, have programs in schools specifically focusing on these skills. The main goal is to better prepare students for college and fields that will use these skill sets.
Here at the library, we are learning more about STEM and beginning to add programs and activities to our already established ones. At a conference this summer, I attended a session showing ways organizations are assisting libraries in bringing or creating programs for their libraries. The STAR Library Education Network Project (STAR_Net) is part of a national initiative to support libraries already offering STEM learning. I signed up for the Community of Practice which allows users to post questions, answers, ideas, and more. Although science and math have never been my best subjects, I have always actually loved doing science experiments. I am excited to expand what we already do!