This independent study of six innovative frontline STEAM in youth work projects explores the questions:
- What is the value of delivering STEAM in the youth work setting?
- How does youth work practice contribute to the development and learning of young people in STEAM?
- What contribution does it make to their lives?
- What challenges, if any, exist in the delivery of STEAM in youth work?
- How do these inhibit the rolling out of high-quality STEAM in youth work practice in Ireland?
- How can these challenges be adequately addressed?
The study, by Sinéad Begley, paints an inspiring picture of a diverse range of practice that is emerging in the field covering electronics, robotics, coding, sustainability, ecology, botanical art, light, space, the universe and more. It has evidenced the very valuable role of youth work and non-formal education in creating access to fun, hands-on STEAM learning opportunities for young people from backgrounds that are underrepresented in STEAM.
At the same time, it provides a range of useful recommendations for other bodies with interests in youth work and STEAM education and public engagement, including:
- Frontline youth work organisations
- Youth work representative and capacity-building bodies
- Organisations that deliver higher education for youth workers
- Informal science communicators
- STEAM, art and cultural institutions
- Funders of STEAM education and public engagement
- Various local and national statutory organisations.
STEAM in Youth Work is funded by the Science Foundation of Ireland.
An Assessment of the Value of STEAM in the Youth Work setting in Ireland, April 2021