How closely related are science, art, and engineering? The Museum recently held a workshop for representatives of its GirlsRISE nationwide network of museums and science centers related to this question. It focused on program models that use art and science exhibit development skills to engage girls in electrical engineering. Participants learned about GirlsRISE website resources and opportunities for mini-grants, and also rotated through three hands-on stations during the workshop. In Shadow Play, they manipulated circuits and everyday materials like cookie cutters, flashlights, and colored plastic cups to create artistic patterns of light and shadow. The Scribbling Monsters activity allowed participants to create a motorized contraption that moves in unusual ways, leaving a mark to trace its path. And in Conduction Junction, they experimented with Snap Circuits® and different materials to find out what makes a good conductor. Through this workshop, participants were inspired to think of all the creative ways they could combine science, art, and engineering in their own programs and activities. Those three things may seem very different, but everyone walked away with the idea that any one of those three things can stir creativity and inspiration in any of the others.
GirlsRISEnet is a nationwide network of museums led by the Miami Science Museum, which works to strengthen the professional capacity of informal science educators to motivate young girls from minority backgrounds to pursue careers in science and engineering (www.girlsrisenet.org/).