Why S.T.E.M. is important for young and old

Here at BrainHackr we have a keen passion for all things S.T.E.M. Our team of contributors consists of everything from designers and developers to neuro-linguistic programmers and those with degrees in psychology and hypnotherapy. In the lead up to National Science Week this seems like a great time to explain a little bit about why.

S.T.E.M. is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. In essence, S.T.E.M. makes up every part of our day to day lives, because the practices that make it up are everywhere.

  • Science is all around us, everything that we see. This includes the sun, moon, stars, clouds, animals, plants, from the food we eat to the products we use.
  • Technology is growing and influencing our lives at an ever increasing pace, yes, but technology also goes back much farther than that. Look at the first televisions, radios, long distance communication and see how far we’ve come.
  • Engineering covers everything from your local wifi network to the design of roads, sewerage systems and everything else you could think of.
  • Mathematics (despite what you told your high school maths teacher) is a part of every occupation and so much of what we do in our lives.

Whether you realise it or not, S.T.E.M. is part of your day to day life. I can’t put it any more eloquently than Rosalind Franklin, the English chemist who made contributions to the understanding of the molecular structures of DNA, RNA, viruses, coal, and graphite.

You look at science (or at least talk of it) as some sort of demoralising invention of man, something apart from real life, and which must be cautiously guarded and kept separate from everyday existence. But science and everyday life cannot and should not be separated. Science, for me, gives a partial explanation of life. In so far as it goes, it is based on fact, experience and experiment… In my view, all that is necessary for faith is the belief that by doing our best we shall come nearer to success and that success in our aims (the improvement of the lot of mankind, present and future) is worth attaining.

Rosalind Franklin

At BrainHackr we focus on these areas together not only because the skills and knowledge in each discipline are essential for success, but also because these fields are deeply intertwined in the real world and in how humans learn most effectively. S.T.E.M. is an interdisciplinary and applied approach that is coupled with hands-on, problem-based learning. A STEM-literate person is not only an innovator and critical thinker, but is able to make meaningful connections between community, work and global issues.