Lesson Ideas and Activities
How To Promote Learning Through Art On The Playground For STEAM
There’s a growing emphasis on integrating STEM subjects into the playground. A common misconception is that you’re either left-brained: someone who is more logical, analytical and therefore better at mathematics, or right-brained: more creative, thoughtful and as result better at reading.
Frequently, art is seen as less important when compared to science, technology, engineering and maths and is often overlooked.
The STEAM initiative combines STEM subjects with art because it is attractive and inviting to students. Art can also help to compliment learning and aid in the understanding of other subjects, too.
A great example of how art and STEM work together is through looking at comic book superheroes: Spiderman is arguably the best superhero character for explaining physics, Batman and his gadgets represent technology and Ironman epitomises engineering.
Art is therefore an integral part of learning through play and can be combined with science and technology to fuel creativity. Little art enthusiasts of all ages can immerse themselves in performing arts, fine arts, art through language and musical creativity.
Performing Arts: Play Your Little Art Out…
Art comes in various forms; for children, make-believe play can help to build creativity. Imaginary play commonly comprises of role assignments and discussions - kids must decide among themselves who will take on a certain role and what it entails.
Pretend play on the playground is physical art as it encourages imagination and inspired cluster play through the design of apparatus used.
Take the Performance Stages for example. Whether little ones put on an arty display for their friends or imagine that they are superstars of a popular TV show, it’s a fanciful means of flexing their creative muscles.
Children can cook up a Michelin-starred meal for their friends using the Mud Kitchen to showcase their inner mini MasterChef. That’s the thing about imaginary fantasy play: children can use what they have seen and learnt so far and put their own take on it.
There are no right or wrong answers - just endless enjoyable opportunities for invented play, self-confidence boosting skills and continued learning.
Playhouses can be a much-loved, highly-coveted restaurant - ‘what’s on the menu for today?’. The chalkboard at the back can be used to display the set menu, complete with prices.
Friends can take a seat on the benches and practise the “art” of waiting patiently until their food is ready to be served. Nifty playdough has a part, too; children can carve and create striking presentations of food.
This is a great illustration of inventive play using a mixture of art, applying literacy practise and maths to a real-life situation.
Fine Art: Artists at Play
Budding artists can create beautiful masterpieces, individually exhibiting its own meaning. Blank canvases such as the white board, chalk board or other Activity Play Panels all take a key part in supporting children to produce lovely pieces, with their own interpretation of what they’ve drawn.
What’s more is that it’s a pleasant side-effect of having fun!
Art and Language
Classroom learning can, at times, be daunting for little ones, particularly those who struggle to master the alphabet, numbers and phonics.
Art is entertaining: it offers visually pleasing designs to draw children towards it. With crafty and intricately designed, Playground Markings, such as the slithering A-Z snake and the royal-horned 1-10 caterpillar, learning suddenly becomes less frightening. Free play with purpose, seamlessly unites art with education.
A range of pleasant-sounding, Outdoor Musical Instruments are a source of limitless fascination for kids. Whether they’re rhymically-beating the African drums, having a boogie to the rattling sound of shakers, or simply relishing the melodious sounds of chimes, music is an art form of expression.
It helps children to de-stress and dance to the rhythm of their own beats!
STEAM playgrounds represent an appreciation and understanding of the importance of including therapeutic and cheerful art. Art surrounds us, an engineer uses art and creativity during the design process, similarly technology uses art to create appeal.
If you would like to find out how we can help you to improve your school or nursery playground to support STEAM learning, please do not hesitate to Contact Us and arrange a free consultation with one of our experts.