WHY STEAM?

Coming from a background that is rich with Tech and Arts, I am a massive advocate for integration of the arts into everything.

Arts is Creativity. Creativity is innovation. Innovation is our future.

When STEM was first introduced to Australia, it received little attention. Well, actually NO attention. So, imagine trying to create a movement around STEAM! We introduced STEAM on TinkerTanks’ opening day — Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math, and it’s certainly been a journey of learning and understanding. Introducing the Arts, or creativity to STEM is close to my heart, with out this, there is no innovation. The Arts are finally being recognised as a critical addition to future proofing our children.

Our future, and the future of our children will heavily rely on the basic life skills that are no longer taught in the traditional school environment. STEAM addresses this in unique and challenging ways — with skills like :

  • Problem solving
  • Critical thought processes
  • Creative approach
  • Design — thinking
  • Collaborative mindset
  • Growth mindset
  • Hands-on/Experiential Learning

We mentor all of this at TinkerTank in an integrated and super fun way — Project based learning through PLAY!

Why do we believe in this approach? This approach that supports passion, curiosity and imagination?

IT STICKS.

Our approach empowers children to have a growth mindset to be leaders and inventors.

Let’s create, not consume!

TinkerTank is self-directed and project-based learning. Our programs are child-centric, interest-driven, and focused on empowering students to be creators, rather than just consumers. Creating this environment to develop hard and soft skills during these influential and formative years, will will ensure that students will carry them for the rest of their lives.

Being CREATORS and not consumers is an incredibly important way to move through our future. Building the confidence to build and solve issues is a necessary skill.

Imagine what an improved and different world we can create by empowering more students, a world of infinite possibilities by giving our children the right mindset.

Harvard and multiple other educational institutes have been researching the brain, emotional intelligence and the learning process for quite some time now, and it keeps coming back to 3 main things :

  1. Stress free environment
  2. Experiential learning through supported play
  3. Interest-led learning

Here, take a peek at it all:

http://developingchild.harvard.edu/

My second initiative “NinthCloud”, (a pivot or two before TinkerTank) involved early childhood development and approaches to improve the “child care experience”, and a CSR solution that was bridging the gap between Parents and their children while they were at work. I spent way too much time reading these studies, as I wanted to provide something that would change the system from the bottom up.

Stats,Resources, Articles.

http://www.fya.org.au/report/the-new-work-mindset-report/

http://www.smh.com.au/national/education/explainer-stem-and-what-it-means-to-australias-education-system-20170105-gtm93f.html

http://www.chiefscientist.gov.au/2016/03/report-australias-stem-workforce/

https://www.studentsfirst.gov.au/restoring-focus-stem-schools-initiative

https://www.pwc.com.au/pdf/a-smart-move-pwc-stem-report-april-2015.pdf

https://www.cio.com.au/article/585493/picking-up-steam-how-arts-can-drive-stem-leadership/

https://www.pwc.com.au/stem.html

http://research.acer.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1299&context=research_conference

Students NEED PLAY.

STEAM is the best and most effective way to have students explore interests through experimentation. Whatever their interest may be! Sports, Arts, Music, agriculture, mining, transportation…. Every career your child will have, will require knowledge that is STEAM based. Come to TinkerTank to see how we have made learning these skills FUN!

TinkerTank was founded by Julija McDowell, an ex-ILM CG Animator who gravitated toward technology in all its forms through it’s unlimited creative potential.