STEAM Initiative

MCPK launched its STEAM Initiative in 2014 to ensure that our children acquire the 21st century skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in school and in life. STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics, and is a wonderful way to use children's natural curiosity to develop skills such as creativity and innovation, critical thinking and problem solving, and collaboration & communication. The STEAM Initiative is an outgrowth of our successful Garden Project created by Laura Marchese (“Miss Laura”), where children use modern dance to understand science and nature. MCPK offers STEAM events throughout the year for children, families and educators:

  • STEAM Family Day (fall): hands-on projects and workshops for children and their parents/caregivers.
  • Early Learning Institute for Educators (winter): one-day workshop where leaders in STEAM education offer best-in-class educational techniques, hands-on training, and Continuing Education credits to teachers, administrators and college students.
  • STEAM Fair (spring): modeled after the concept of a science fair where classes share their STEAM explorations with one another.

At MCPK we're moving full STEAM ahead! 

Project Approach to Learning Our STEAM Initiative is a way to enhance the hands-on, experiential approach to learning that MCPK has employed so successfully for the past 18 years. Using the project approach and Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences, our classrooms deeply explore topics that are of interest to the children such as dinosaurs, the ocean, superheroes, and New York City. One classroom recently created a unit inspired by a large construction project going on next door to the school, which easily lent itself to STEAM overlays in centers such as science (hammering and screwing), blocks (constructing buildings inspired by local architecture), and library (books on construction, engineering, and architecture). Children synthesized the knowledge they had gained during the unit and worked as a team to design their own restaurant.