At Excel, we firmly believe in the value of STEAM education – that is, ensuring art has a seat at the same table as science, technology, engineering and math. Letting students flex their creative muscles is just as critical to students’ success as boosting traditional STEM skills and technical intuition. When my colleague Mr. Bulale showed me the unit plan for his sixth grade math unit on graphing positive and negative integers, I figured this could be a great place to inject a little artistic freedom.
I spent an afternoon creating a Chrome app (that would run full-screen on our students’ Chromebooks) that allowed students to interactively draw lines on a coordinate plane using ordered pairs. Leveraging some coordinate lists from another school, I created a few sample pieces and added some additional functionality – zoom levels, custom colors and mirroring across each axis.