Furthering its commitment to enhance kids’ learning around science, technology, engineering, arts and math, Turner-owned Cartoon Network has tapped a group of leading industry and academic experts to form a STEAM advisory board.
Cartoon Network’s new STEAM advisory board includes Mimi Ito, professor in residence and MacArthur Foundation chair in digital media and learning at UC Irvine; Zach Klein, CEO of kid-safe online community DIY and Vimeo co-founder; Karen Peterson, CEO of National Girls Collaborative; Mitchel Resnick, Lego Papert professor of learning research and head of the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at MIT Media Lab; and Diana Skaar, head of business innovation for robotics at X (formerly Google[x]).
As a cultural anthropologist of digital culture and an advocate for connected learning, Ito’s research includes a three-year collaborative ethnographic study, funded by the MacArthur Foundation, that explores new media practices of American youth—with a focus on gaming, digital media production and internet use.
Klein’s DIY company hosts two online platforms—diy.org and JAM.com—for kids to learn new skills and share their creations with their friends.
Meanwhile, Peterson brings to the board more than 25 years of experience in education as a classroom teacher, university instructor, teacher educator, program administrator and researcher. Her National Girls Collaborative aims to leverage shared resources for public and private sector organizations interested in expanding girls’ participation in STEM.
Resnick’s Lifelong Kindergarten Group, for its part, partnered with Lego on its Mindstorms robotics kits and developed the globally popular Scratch programming software and online community.
Rounding out the board, Skaar’s robotics-based work with Google includes the Google Art Project, which used tech to make art (including artwork at the White House) more universally accessible.
Corresponding with Computer Science Education Week, the board announcement is the latest collaboration by Cartoon Network to follow its US$30-million STEAM-based funding injection from earlier this year.
That commitment was made in conjunction with President Obama’s Computer Science for All initiative aimed at making coding and other hands-on learning an integral part of student education.
Since then, CN has launched Scratch coding initiatives featuring its hit IP Powerpuff Girls and We Bare Bears.