2014 STEAM Institute Registration Open


A Botanical Immersion Through Multiple Lenses

Join this two-week immersion for teachers, artists, scientists, University students, and community members!


  • Sunday, July 6th Orientation 6-8pm
  • July 7-11 and 14-18, 8:30am to 4:15pm


  • OUTDOORS:University of Alaska Fairbanks North Campus trails
  • INDOORS: West Valley High School Fine Arts classrooms


$500 all inclusive (tuition, special events, materials, fabulous lunches!) $50 non-refundable deposit due at time of registration. $450 balance due on June 1, 2014

Optional: $100 extra for 4 UA credits (595 level) (payment for credit at first day of institute)

ANNOUNCED April 1, 2014 :

$100. STIPENDS WILL BE AWARDED TO EVERY REGISTERED FNSBSD TEACHER (Stipend will be in the form of  a check at the first class meeting)


Continue reading

STEAM rolls on through summer

Marian looking and drawing

 Weekly throughout the summer, area teachers have traversed to the UAF T-field to get up close and personal with “their” birch trees in a STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, math) workshop.

adapted from an article by Nancy Tarnai, SNRAS

Continuing the work of OneTree Alaska, SNRAS Assistant Research Professor Janice Dawe has been leading the science portion of the workshop, while Karen Stomberg, art specialist with the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District, focuses on the artistic side.

The setting is a research plot of 144 birch trees planted in June 2011. On Thursday evenings, the participants gather to learn, observe and draw. Continue reading

Boreal House Hosts First Friday Event


September 7, 2012: A First Friday Event: TRAILWALK: July in the Boreal Forest was held 5-7 pm in the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District Board Room, 520 5th Avenue.

This exhibit featured original botanical illustrations by participants of the first Fairbanks STEAM Institute that was held July 6-13, 2012. There was a hands-on botanical illustration activity and  books were available for sale at this event.

STEAMers produce beautiful botanical books

Margo and Annie book

At the conclusion of the Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM) Institute July 13 at West Valley High School, instructor Jan Dawe told the participants they had set a new gold standard for art and science education. “There is a lot of life to come after STEAM,” Dawe said.

adapted from an article by Nancy Tarnai, SNRAS

Artist and instructor Margo Klass said, “This is a concrete example of what a community of learning can do.”

SNRAS Dean Carol Lewis said, “I can’t wait to see this go into the classroom and have the students see how exciting science can be.”

The 19 teachers attending the workshop produced botanical books highlighting 25 species of the boreal forest. They balanced time in the forest near UAF with classroom instruction and homework. Continue reading

Boreal House Presented Fairbanks STEAM Institute: Illustrated Botanical Books July 2012


Inside the botanical book created by STEAM participantsThe first ever

The first ever STEAM Institute: Illustrated Botanical Books was a huge success with twenty students from all over the state in attendance.

The course centered around the creation of an illustrated botanical entitled Trail Walk: July in the Boreal Forest. Both students and instructors alike came away from the Institute stoked and anticipating more STEAM offerings in 2013. The Institute was a Boreal House collaborative effort with UAF’s School of Natural Resources and Agricultural Sciences (SNRAS) and the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District/Art Center.