Curriculum developers Ruth Catchen and Carolyn DeCristofano explore the benefit and protocol to integrate the arts into STEM.

Author/Artist Bio

Ruth Catchen, M. Music, MA, received her Bachelor of Music degree from American University and her Master of Music degree from The Catholic University of America in Vocal Performance. She has performed with many distinguished opera companies, conductors and orchestras in the United States. Later in her career, she turned her direction to music education and founded a youth chorale with the Naples (FL) Philharmonic Orchestra. She received a second master’s degree in 2007 from the University of Colorado in Curriculum and Instruction/Leadership. Since then, she has worked in developing arts integrated curriculum programs for various schools and school districts and does professional development to support teachers in developing and implementing STEM/STEAM curriculum. She serves as co-chair for the Girls’ STEM Experience in Southern Colorado and also served on the advisory committee to create STEM standards for the Colorado Department of Education. She blogs at http://ruthcatchen.wordpress.com/. Carolyn DeCristofano,M.Ed.,is a curriculum and instruction specialist and President of Blue Heron STEM education. For over twenty years, she has focused on creating STEM and multi-disciplinary experiences for various learners. Her projects have included curriculum, exhibit, and program development and educational research; and she has initiated and implemented collaborative student and teacher programs linking STEM fields to each other, as well as to English/Language Arts, the arts, and social studies. This work has brought her into partnerships with school districts and educational institutions, such as the Museum of Science (Boston), Harvard’s Project Zero, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, TERC, and WGBH, Boston. The former Professional Development Director for the Engineering is Elementary (EiE) project, she served on the development team for EiE, and as a Blue Heron consultant, still works with the program. Also as part of Blue Heron, she works on the Engaging Youth through Engineering team, playing an editorial and developer role for its middle school STEM curriculum modules. In addition, Carolyn is the author of nonfiction books for children, including the acclaimed A Black Hole is NOT a Hole (Charlesbridge Publishing, Inc., 2012).

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