Encourage STEM interest in your child

Apr 6, 2022 | Novi

STEM activities are simple projects, experiments, challenges, and demonstrations that leverage the concepts of science, technology, engineering, and math for learning. The activities are fun and provide inventive, creative, thought-provoking processes.

Introducing these concepts to children early in fun ways can foster a passion for the subjects. 

 

Why is STEM so important?

 

STEM for kids is important because it shows them the more creative side of these typically logically understood subjects.

Children are naturally curious and capable of complex thinking skills prior to speaking. Different types of play are critical to developing skills related to and curiosity towards STEM fields. These skills include questioning, analysis, and evaluation. Exposure to early education in STEM fields can improve a child’s learning abilities, develop the skills to understand complex ideas, and teach problem-solving abilities. These skills and understanding can narrow the gaps between childrens’ educational achievements! Making STEM interesting to a child at a young age can improve their chances of greater success later in life.

 

How to get a child into STEM?

 

Getting a child interested in STEM is easy. Here are fun ways which cultivate their curiosity and optimism toward STEM.

 

Science

 

One of the best ways to get your child interested in science is to explore the outside world. Lab tours can foster a curiosity for chemistry, nature walks can foster a love for ecology, and even a trip to the beach can inspire a great future oceanographer.

Explore the outside world by studying the different kinds of insects, leaves, and trees you can also spot birds and discover the complex colonies ants build.

Look for excuses to discuss the science around simple stuff. For example, talk about gravity while playing with a ball plan family activities that involve measurement, boiling, evaporation, or weather. Conduct fun experiments with children at home like making a lava lamp, creating a leak-proof bag, and even walking water. Science is literally everywhere so showing that to your child early on, can foster a great appreciation and love for the fields. 

 

Technology

 

Children today are referred to as technical natives, this means that they are born with technology deeply integrated into their lives. This does not mean that they understand how technology works, and all the work that goes into their favorite games and websites. This is where you can come in and take them on a teaching journey!

Playing logic games, fun brain teasers and puzzles can help children develop greater problem-solving skills. They are learning about different ways to solve physical and mental problems, which can help them develop solutions to similar problems later in life, or if they choose to pursue it, in the tech field.

Technology comes in many forms, its main purpose is to reduce effort, save time, and increase comfort and efficiency. Examples of major technological breakthroughs in human history include the wheel, the printing press, the steam engine, the lightbulb, the automobile, and the airplane. Your home also holds many examples of technology. From scissors and glue to markers and paper and stickers, ordinary materials solve problems for kids and parents every day.


 

Engineering

 

Does your child love buildings and bridges? What about computers and television? These are all excellent avenues you can use to discuss the wonders of Engineering!. It is crucial to teach about engineering to children at a young age because they will not be exposed to it until much later in school, when they may be tired of hearing about STEM. 

 

Playing with toy cars, trucks, or miniature bridges gives kids a chance to practice using pulleys, levers, and engines. Levers and pulleys are the first and simple things anyone can learn about engineering as a child. Consider introducing the child to gears, wheels, and pulleys.

Construct model ships, airplanes, and buildings with the help of blocks, legos, magnetic cubes, and empty boxes.

 

Math

Many children do not like math and get frustrated easily by it. This is because mathematics can be challenging when they don’t understand its anatomy of it. Help curb this frustration and make math more interesting by using certain activities to stimulate their mathematical problem-solving skills.

 

Look for excuses to discuss the math around simple ideas. For example, discuss fractions or percentages when you slice a cake or pizza. Cooking and baking both present great opportunities to talk about measurement and the importance of counting. 

 

You can use playing pretend for math activities. The child can pretend to be a cashier or a waiter/waitress, and you pretend to be a buying customer.  Have your child handle your check out, and have them calculate your change. 

 

It’s never too late or too early to see if your child has a knack for STEM. Children encouraged early can embrace their natural curiosity and wonder about the world, making it easier to create a positive attitude about STEM and forge their foundational skills for future success.

You can keep your child involved in STEM by engaging them in everyday STEM activities like cooking, buying food, building with legos, and more. Do fun experiments, go exploring, and visit museums that emphasize the process of learning, problem-solving, and exploring.

 

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