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Thursday, May 28, 2015

STEM vs. Language Arts?


Last weekend I took my 10-year-old son to an all-day STEM fair, where children were given hands-on access to 3D printing, rocketry, and car building.  We even got to learn about drones.  It was a great idea to have hundreds of families gather and get inspired by Science Technology Engineering and Math.  I loved seeing his enthusiasm to sponge up loads of useful and practical information.  I enjoyed listening to a woman astronaut speak as well.  But it made me wonder what will happen to interest in English and the cultural arts if all this attention is showered on numbers and equations.

Before children can tackle big problems or figure out how to fly to Mars and back, they’ll need to learn how to read, write, and communicate well, and how to think, analyze, and dream.  It would appear STEM and the liberal arts go hand in hand.  It’s not either or, but both.  Of course, when it comes to choosing a career path, one must determine if they are going to be innovators and entrepreneurs or workers, and they’ll need to decide if they are going to be deep into computer code, calculating measurements, and constructing skyscrapers or if they’ll craft the art, books, and shows that will inspire, entertain, and educate the masses.

When I took the SATs more than three decades ago I was mediocre on my English grade but exceptional in math.  In fact, I was in the nation’s top 8-10% in math.  But I chose a career in book publishing and marketing.  I wrote a book and pen this blog daily.  In my heart, I’m a writer, always wondering how to make things better, how to unearth the secrets that evade us, and how to find a way for words to direct us toward peace, love, and democracy for all.

You know what I mean or you wouldn’t be reading this.  You enjoy how words combine in such a way – out of the trillions of potential formations – to insightfully, succinctly and accurately capture the truths of life, of a moment, of a person’s existence.  Maybe there’s a STEM approach to the writing life.  Words, like numbers, can, if in the proper formation, reveal answers to us.

The world needs language arts and it needs STEM.  It needs people to pursue careers that fill society’s needs.  It also needs everyone to possess a little bit of each, so that we are balanced and fully formed.  

The best way to enjoy life and to contribute to this world is to specialize in an area but to also make sure we don’t fully ignore what they didn’t specialize in.  We should have an appreciation and an understanding for all of the things we have not fully pursued or embraced.

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015

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