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Design Thinking and Crochet for STEAM Learning

Have you ever thought about how crochet can foster creativity in students? Studies report crochet as a great outlet for creativity (Myers 2011), and the old world craft of crochet can be used as a tool for students to expand their creativity (Pickrem, 2019; Stalp et al., 2018). But, let's go a step further and think about the art of crochet as a component in STEAM content with inclusivity of girls in STEAM fields. Kijima et al. (2021) present research on design thinking and integrating artistic approaches in relation to the importance of STEAM learning and how it complements STEM. Design thinking is purported to spur innovation and harness a sense of creativity. Kijima et al. (2021) explain that STEAM learning can foster greater interest in STEM among adolescent girls. Given the researched information and experiences that I've had working with teenage girls, Ive learned that crochet is an outlet to enage in STEAM content and fields, as well as increases well-being, encourages the exploration of creativity, and actually helps girls feel confident to express themselves in mostly male dominant STEM fields. Check out this article on teenage girls integrating crochet with robotics. .Also, educators can spark interest in students early by using this crochet and math lesson plan for all 3rd - 6th grade students.

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