Science-Arts as Verbs

New Figurations in Early Childhood

In: Why Science and Art Creativities Matter

Abstract

This chapter examines how STEAM education may transform education in the STEM subjects towards education for a sustainable future. Particularly, it examines the potential of combining science and arts in preschool practice (children aged 1–5 years) for the sake of fostering sustainable knowing and being in the world. Here, it pursues the idea that everyday science verbs (e.g., rolling, bouncing and sticking) may be referents for children–matter relations in which science learning and creativity emerge. The chapter includes two stories from a collaboration with preschool teachers who have implemented verb-based science-arts education in practice. In one story, the verbs “sprout and grow” were combined with painting and drama, and in the other story, the verb “shade” (to cast a shadow) was combined with music, dancing and painting. Grounded in Edvin Østergaard’s plea to make more room for aesthetic experience in science education, in Barbara McClintock’s scientific creativity and “feeling for the organism”, and in Karen Barad’s agential realism, the chapter portrays examples of science-arts education that allow children to be intensely involved in the world. It concludes that the arts may help children not only to communicate and explore science phenomena, but also to sympathise with nature’s goings on from within; from their own multifaceted experiences of what it is like to cast a shadow, sprout and grow.

Why Science and Art Creativities Matter

(Re-)Configuring STEAM for Future-Making Education

Series: