|File Size||162.70 KB|
|Create Date||November 13, 2017|
Abstract: Purpose – This paper aims to argue that providing youth of color with opportunities to explore content while reflecting on and sharing mental health concerns is an under-focused dimension of teaching and learning that has the potential to positively impact these students’ academic achievement in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines
Design/methodology/approach – This paper used a qualitative study to interrogate a teaching/ learning model through a hip-hop-based science program.
Findings – Because urban youth of color are traditionally most disengaged in STEM and also the ones who are the least likely to seek or be provided with mental health tools/services, it is suggested that there is a connection between their low academic achievement and the absence of opportunities for them to address emotions that impact their academic success. Furthermore, if these youths come from communities where mental health stressors are highly prevalent, and teaching is most restrictive, a model for teaching that considers practices that address both their academic and mental health needs becomes necessary.
Research limitations/implications – This work does not intend to devalue or undermine the role of school counselors or traditional teachers. It is believed that the role of the school counselor or social worker when youths identify themes that go beyond the scope of personal challenges is significant and that these professionals should be made available when engaging in this type of work. It is also believed that the educator who may not be privy to hip-hop can successfully engage in this type of activity with STEM students. Finally, the use of science as an exemplar for engaging in this work does not indicate that the other STEM disciplines cannot or should not explore this type of model.
Practical implications – The paper outlines a model that other educators/researchers may use and suggests ways that this brand of research may be implemented by scholars across the country.
Social implications – Through the implementation of the hip-hop-based science program as an intervention in science classrooms, students are provided the opportunity to bolster science content knowledge and knowledge of self. In addition, utilizing the hip-hop-based science program created an avenue for teachers to develop better understanding of students and their full socioemotional selves. This is especially necessary in STEM education where perceptions of students’ decisions to not engage in the disciplines are directly related to our collective unwillingness to present the subject matter in a way that goes beyond the glorification of its stoic and “old white” history.
Originality/value – This paper suggests a new dimension of STEM research through an exploration of hip-hop culture and youth emotions.
Keywords STEM, Mental health, Equity
Paper type Research paper