Our annual Holiday Gift Guide is here again to help you find awesome presents for the math lovers in your life! Check out our recommendations.
Every November 8, the fields of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics take the spotlight for National STEM/STEAM Day. By celebrating the ways in which STEM/STEAM affects our lives and our world, we’re able to show children how important it is to study these fields and to be aware of their impact. This can be done both at school and at home through interactive games and activities, an exposure to the vast array of STEM/STEAM jobs out there, and a deep look at the intricate world around them. The goal is to heighten the awareness and enthusiasm in students so that they are inspired to pursue these fields of study in their own careers. Because our future depends on it!
You don’t have to go far to give kids a hands-on STEM/STEAM learning experience that they can enjoy. Your local library, park, or grocery store will offer plenty of ways to discuss STEM/STEAM at work in the real world. And many museums offer virtual programs that highlight the fundamentals of STEM/STEAM learning. By seeing how inventions are imagined, created, and developed, kids learn how they might respond to current problems in the world with their own solutions. Many museums also offer free movies, digital tours, and webcasts to allow a more-integrated learning experience.
Point out to your child the various inventions and discoveries that have an impact on their lives, and encourage them to share their ideas about creations that could make the world a better place. When kids know that their creative solutions to problems are being heard and taken seriously, they learn to take risks and think outside the box. It motivates them to turn on their problem-solving, critical-thinking, and reasoning skills. They may even be inspired to collaborate with others to come up with new solutions. This kind of thinking is essential in STEM/STEAM fields and will help them excel in school as well as in their careers.
Engage in discussions with your child about careers that interest them, and use that as a starting point to explore the wide range of possibilities in fields that use STEM/STEAM skills. Architecture, design, marine biology, 3D modelling — the list goes on and on. Many students aren’t aware, for example, that it takes an engineer to design much of the sports equipment they use, or that becoming a fashion designer requires a math background. They may also not know the financial advantages that often come with a STEM/STEAM university degree. These are great conversations to have with your child, as enthusiasm at a young age sets the stage for a lifetime of curiosity, joy, and passion for these subjects. Which is one of the main reasons we celebrate STEM/STEAM Day!
Examples of STEM/STEAM applications are evident everywhere in the world around us. Use this opportunity to explore them with your child. In the kitchen, for example, you can discuss measurements and proportions while making a dessert. At a sporting event, you can examine the speed of a ball, points and averages, and the problem-solving skills required of the athletes. When driving in a car, you can talk about the mechanisms involved with the steering wheel, brake pedal, and windshield wipers. And these are just a few of the many ways in which our world is affected by STEM/STEAM learning. Encourage your child to point out some of their own discoveries, and tie these examples to what they’re learning in school, so they can recognize the connection.
Anytime teachers can integrate some fun into STEM/STEAM learning, the classroom becomes a place where students are eager to explore. Sphero BOLT is a coding robot that brings STEM and the arts together as it empowers students to use their creativity, coding skills, and ingenuity. It’s durable and waterproof, so there’s no limit to the imaginative adventures they can embark upon. Sphero BOLT can even be dipped in paint so students of all ages can work together to create masterpieces.
Mathnasium Learning Centres celebrates National STEM/STEAM Day by putting a focus on the “M” for Math, which is the foundation for all the elements. Mathnasium is a math-only learning company that provides personalized math instruction to students who want to catch up, keep up, or get ahead. The importance of math in children’s lives cannot be overstated, and it’s critical that they start with a strong foundation and have a true understanding of each new concept before moving on to the next one. Mathnasium’s proven method teaches children at their own pace and builds their knowledge level by level, so they’re able to excel at math, develop critical-thinking and problem-solving skills, and gain confidence for a promising future.
Mathnasium meets your child where they are and helps them with the customized program they need, for any level of mathematics.