Learning about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics along with a splash of the arts (STEAM) makes students want to sing and dance. From a scientific point of view, the previous three trials (AKA previous three annual Rap Battles), support the hypothesis that the 4th annual STEAM Rap Battle will play to another full house at the Sunrise Theatre in Fort Pierce on Thursday, November 10, 2016 at 7 P.M.
Middle school and high school student teams from St. Lucie Public Schools (SLPS) across the District will align STEAM-based lyrics to hip-hop beats in a Rap Battle that promises to showcase the astute academic content knowledge as well as the gifted artistic talents of students. According to event coordinator Allison Barajas, “This event is a beautiful blend of content and the arts. Student performers have clear parameters — the lyrics must be closely aligned to content standards and shared within a defined time limit. The creative element students bring to each performance regarding the visual and performing arts is remarkable.” She explained that during rehearsals for the STEAM Rap Battle, there is a synergy among the students, their teachers, and event coordinators. “There truly is electricity in the air as teams rehearse their performances, thrive on feedback, and refine their stage presentation in preparation for their live evening debut,” added Barajas.
While the evening’s performers are supported by their teachers, parents, and backstage personnel, the event itself is wholly supported through the generosity of business partners who sponsor engaging educational opportunities and community partnerships. This year’s sponsors align to the STEAM acronym. Beginning with the “S” and representing science, is SLPS’s Career and Technical Education Team. Florida Institute of Technology heralds the “T” for technology in education, and the “E” which stands for Engineering is sponsored by FPL. That brings us to the “A” for arts which is supported by the Education Foundation of St. Lucie County, and PNC Bank represents the final piece of the equation. PNC is the proud sponsor of the “M” for mathematics in STEAM education. Donations from each of the sponsoring organizations has gifted the students of SLPS with the opportunity to deepen their studies of STEM-related content and exploration of the arts as the STEAM Rap Battle enters its fourth year.
One might ask, why the connection between the arts and STEM-related studies? It is vital to continue the effort to engage students in STEM-related fields of study as they prepare for college and the world of work. Success in the 21st Century has high demand for an in-depth knowledge of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Likewise, it is important for students to hone their ability to integrate and apply these skills in order to problem solve the challenges they will be faced with in the work force of tomorrow. As arts are integrated into the studies, opportunities for diverse learning opportunities and diverse forms of expression present themselves. Incorporating the arts into STEM studies sparks imagination, triggers innovation, and fuels creativity.
This blend of STEM and the arts will be brought to center stage on November 10 as veteran Rap Battle performers and brand new talent perform live at the Sunrise Theatre. Eighteen teams will vie for the STEAM Rap Battle Championship, and a panel of community leaders will serve as judges. Utilizing a specific scoring rubric that takes into account depth of content, collaborative impact, and artistic quality to score and rank performances, they will name the middle school champion and the high school champion for the 4th Annual STEAM Rap Battle.
Tickets are free and going fast. To reserve your seat, call 772-429-7752.