Biologist, performance enthusiast and International Class alumna Raquell Holmes, hosted a conference at UConn Health Center at Farmington, CT, on Performance Science Education: Cultivating Ensembles in STEM Education and Research. The multi-disciplianary happening was attended by 40 educators and grad students from the STEM disciplines — engineers, biologists, mathematicians, computer scientists, physicists and chemists — who are among those pioneers exploring how the arts, culture and performance can enhance the teaching of science and math.
Holmes, creator of ImprovScience, kicked off the two-day event with a video of Institute co-founder Fred Newman’s, How to Talk, which introduced the practice of creative listening — which Holmes identified as an essential skill for educators.
Wesleyan’s Michael Weir and Laura Grabel presented a science education project developed in collaboration with Liz Lerman’s Dance Exchange. Others played with storytelling, narrative and improv as frameworks for the science lesson.
Institute faculty Susan Massad, who has used performance and improvisation in the training of medical residents, led an interactive workshop: Creating a New Performance of Health, complete with (pointless) improv games.