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STEAM Play: The importance of informal learning settings and using play-based science practices in working with children from vulnerable and underrepresented communities.
March 3 @ 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Play has a transformative role in enabling underrepresented student populations to cope with difficult circumstances and express themselves. Avi Santo, Ph.D., Professor and Chair, Department of Communication, has worked with children experiencing homelessness engaging them in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics) activities, utilizing play-based programming to open an outlet for their creativity, learning and social-emotional growth. Cate Schultz, a current UNC-Chapel Hill undergraduate student and MacDonald Community Fellow through the Carolina Center for Public Service, engages children with play-based education at both her outdoor education program at the Carrboro Boys and Girls Club and at Wonder Connection, a non-profit based at the UNC Children’s Hospital. Their presentation explores the vital importance of play in informal settings to empower children in vulnerable communities to participate in STEAM.