I want to take a minute to talk about Rod and I positioning ourselves as public amateurs and our desire to encourage creative and academic risk-taking in the kids we work with. We believe that one of the greatest things we can model for kids is creative risk-taking. By going through the world as public amateurs we try to set an example of taking on projects you may not seem to be qualified for, or know you will have success with. We strive to incorporate science, engineering, and math learning into our projects but we are both sculptors. We seek out professionals and experts in these fields to teach us what we don't know and then set out to try to make a vision we had come to life. We come up with project ideas and then use our existing knowledge and input from others to take the best shot at it but by no means do we know we will succeed.
The day we got the basic infrastructure built on the pickle bike Rod and I looked at each other and said, "This just might work!" One of the boys looked at us in astonishment and said, "You mean you've never done this before?" We said, "No, who in the world has ever built a 12' long pickle bike? But we are pretty good at trouble shooting and we figured we could figure out a way to make it work."
We strongly believe that it is important kids see us as adults being willing to say we are not experts at something but we are willing to public try and risk failure to do something we believe could be awesome. This kind of risk-taking is how kids can develop creative confidence. Practicing this creative and academic risk-taking can foster innovative thinking in kids and allow them to find creative expression and joy in STEAM creativity.