Winter 2020
The Innovation Collaborative serves as a national forum to foster creativity, innovation and lifelong learning. It identifies and disseminates information about the many ways that effective integration of the arts, sciences, humanities, engineering, and technology reinforces teaching and incorporates lifelong learning in both in-school (formal) and out-of-school (informal) settings.
Welcome to the Innovation Collaborative newsletter!

When an acronym becomes so common that it is infused into common language, we often lose the original meaning or intent. STEM was once METS, a structure proposed by the National Science Foundation to encourage cooperation among university departments and researchers. It is now closely associated with the habits of mind that encourage creativity and innovation. That definition invites the inclusion of the arts as these behaviors coalesce and inspire learning. It also implies that STEAM learning cannot be limited to school time.

So, including an A for Arts is not just a change in an acronym but an acknowledgement that there is great common ground in the goals of each discipline. This month’s Innovation Collaborative Newsletter features several programs that truly coalesce what might once have been separate disciplines, and an interview with a thought leader who epitomizes this attitude toward education. We invite you to join us.
Here is a fascinating story of how curiosity led to the development of the inquiry process and a network of science education centers in national governments across sub-Saharan Africa. It is due, in large part, to the leadership and expertise of one of the Collaborative’s Research Thought Leaders, Hubert Dyasi, Ph.D.
A Thought Leader and their work are featured in each Collaborative newsletter. In this issue, we visit with Hubert Dyasi, Ph.D., whose research in the teaching and learning of science, including the inquiry process, helps inform the work of the Collaborative. Hubert—now retired—was a professor of science education at the City College, City University of New York (CUNY). He is widely known for his teaching of science in pre-college education in the United States and Africa (see Curiosity Leads to Science Education Centers across Africa )
Innovation Collaborative Projects and News
The Innovation Collaborative has received an additional National Endowment for the Arts Art Works grant of $10,000 during the 2019-20 school year. With this grant, it will study dissemination methods for sharing its effective practices in K-12 STEAM teacher professional development and classroom practices with the arts, STEM, and humanities fields. More...
In Phase 2 of its 2015-16 K-12 Effective Practices Research Project (2015-16), made possible with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Collaborative identified 10 teachers nationally who most closely met its Effective Practices criteria. These criteria include problem-solving, analysis, synthesis, and processing skills across disciplines, in addition to life skills such as persistence and collaboration. More...

Join the Innovation Collaborative’s Out-of-School research project and help produce the first national data on STEAM effective practices in out-of-school settings! The Innovation Collaborative has successfully collected surveys from practitioners that are conducting STEAM activities in out-of-school settings. We are interested in finding more sites to participate in our study. We have some excellent submissions but need a larger data pool to understand what is happening in the field. If you have any interdisciplinary programs that integrate the arts and/or humanities,with STEM subjects, we would be delighted to hear from you. We would appreciate your assistance in continuing the dissemination of our survey if you know of colleagues that are also doing this kind of work. Please fill out our survey at:

Please complete survey by the close of business on Friday, March 21, 2020.
From the Field
STEM Education has captured the attention of state policymakers who are concerned about preparing students for an evolving workforce. By 2030, the Institute for the Future estimates that 85 percent of the jobs that today’s K-12 learners will be doing haven’t been invented — demanding a workforce that is creative and prepared to respond innovatively to real-world problems. Thanks to generous support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the U.S. Department of Education, the   Arts Education Partnership  (a member of the Innovation Collaborative) has been expanding its work to explore the role of the arts in STEM. More...
The National Art Education Association (NAEA), in collaboration with the University of Alaska-Fairbanks and the National Science Foundation, hosted its first of four STEAM workshops for educators on April 26-27, 2019, in Lincoln, Nebraska. Twenty-five educators from five states, in the fields of science, higher education, elementary academic classroom, community arts, and visual arts gathered for the two-day training that investigated a series of five units to explore with students.   More...
As you canvas the country to identify STEM programs, one of the prevalent activities is robotics teams at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. Although the primary focus of these is STEM, many also incorporate STEAM into their programs. As these programs expand schools find that they need to work with all of the school departments, including visual art, graphic design, and business. More...
Early childhood STEM experiences can improve the diversity of students who demonstrate later-in-life involvement with STEM as a field. Engaging a broad range of learners with positive STEM experiences is essential to combating gaps in STEM achievement, an ongoing challenge that has been confirmed in studies, along race, socioeconomic status, and gender.
Looking to See is a Donors Choose project based on the integration of Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards into my PK-grade 2 Art and Art History curriculum. Specifically, my goal for this project was to move toward the application of specific grade-level science standards in the areas of biomimicry, light & sound, motion and stability, and Earth's systems.
In Washington, D.C., the Kennedy Center’s newly opened REACH Moonshot Studio is a one-of-a kind, drop-in space dedicated to learning through the process of artmaking. Creativity, critical thinking, curiosity, risk-taking, and imagination are essential as visitors of all ages spend time delving into various art forms, exploring stories and themes from the Center’s stages, and creating their own works of art.
Afterschool Programs Step Up as Key Partners in STEM Education.
A groundbreaking survey report has documented the clear advantages of afterschool STEM. The report, America after 3 PM: Full STEM Ahead focuses on four of the nation’s largest youth-serving organizations, 4-H, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Girls Inc., and YMCA, that have recently launched “Imagine Science,” an initiative which aspires to reach millions. The report covers both the expansion of traditional programs and innovative collaborations. More...
In the vast rural and agricultural San Joaquin area of the Central Valley of California you will find the unique SAM. Academy (Science, Art & Music), a community-based ”maker” program located in downtown Sanger, California. The SAM Academy houses a music studio, a STEM Workshop with ample space for up to 40 students at a time, and a mobile STEM program that travels to schools in isolated rural communities. More...
Lucinda Presley, Chair and Executive Director | Jonathan Katz, Strategic Advisor |
Amanda Upton, Secretary | Kathi Levin, Treasurer

Jeff Allen | Donna DiBartolomeo | Deborah Gaston | Wendy Hancock | Michael Jay |
Kathi Levin | Roger Malina | Lucinda Presley | Juliana Texley | Amanda Upton |
Andrew D. Watson | Hope E. Wilson