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EASTHAMPTON — The Easthampton Learning Foundation is investing significantly in enhancing the STEAM program at Mountain View School. Priscilla Kane Hellweg, founder of the Arts Integration Studio, and Megan Kelley-Bagg, Easthampton Public Schools STEAM teacher, are collaborating to expand STEAM opportunities for K-5 students.

STEAM, an educational approach integrating science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics, fosters 21st-century skills like creative thinking and collaboration. Hellweg and Kelley-Bagg aim to strengthen interdisciplinary collaboration, elevate arts education within STEAM, and develop replicable content for teachers.

A dedicated STEAM cohort has been formed, starting with fifth-grade teachers engaging in collaborative professional development. The focus is on weather, climate, and earth systems, with two hands-on curriculum units created for fifth grade. New STEAM content units will be developed monthly during the pilot year.

With the success of the fifth-grade team, the program aims to inspire more teachers to embrace creative arts integration in the coming years. The STEAM program, launched last year, aims to promote collaboration among educators and introduce captivating, project-based learning opportunities into the academic day.