JAL STEAM SCHOOL is an educational program by Japan Airlines. It is a new program for SORAIKU® that JAL has taken on as part of its CSR to nurture the future generation. With STEAM as its central educational concept, it aims to develop skills in mathematics and sciences together with creativity.
In planning the program, we focused on the high level of affinity between STEAM, and the world of airplanes and the sky. The addition of technology into the mix of this advanced educational concept aimed to increase the creativity of the learning and expand the experience, and we developed an application based on aerodynamics. We also gave consideration to graphics so that the element of art in STEAM would function in digital environments.
In the experiment, wings are assembled using an airplane model that is capable of more than 8000 different wing designs. When the model is placed in a hangar-like scanner, the application analyzes the wings, deduces the model’s flight performance, and visualizes how the assembled aircraft would fly. Through repeated experiments, the participants discover relationships between wings and planes. The classes ended with a flight map experience showing all the planes flying around the earth.
The first lesson was conducted at JAL SKY MUSEUM with elementary students in grades 4 to 6. The applications and model teaching materials used in the class were developed under the supervision of JAL pilots and engineers and are designed based on the principles of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in aerodynamics. Also, in order to emphasize art, which is important in talking about STEAM, we were very particular about the appearance and functionality of all the designs that were to be touched by the children and worked on them so that they would increase creativity. In the future, we will develop lessons on new themes and develop the program so that children of many different ages can participate. We are also planning to make visits to schools and public spaces to run the program.