STEM subjects are tough subjects to teach to kids, but it can be done with some ingenuity and creativity. In this article, we will focus on the ways in which we can get children interested in STEM topics. If you’re raising an inquisitive child these STEM subjects will be great for them and for you to get involved and enjoy doing together.
As a parent, it’s likely that you’ve heard of the term STEM learning once or twice. Introducing youngsters to STEM subjects is fantastic for their overall development because it allows them to develop various key skills to carry through their lives. But what does STEM actually mean? Well, it’s an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths, and refers to all subjects that fall under that umbrella, from Astronomy to Pathology. I have teamed up with a private school in Surrey to help you know where to start when it comes to exploring STEM with your child at home.
STEM has been a growing trend in education over the past decade, and this has caused many schools to make changes to their curriculums. In order to keep up with this trend, teachers need to develop new techniques for teaching STEM subjects that are both creative and engaging for children.
Kids Can Learn STEM from Their Everyday Surroundings
Kids can learn about STEM subjects from their everyday life. It is not necessary for them to go to a museum or lab in order to learn about science. They can learn about it from the everyday objects around their house, like water and the air they breathe.
There are many different ways that teachers could implement these new techniques – each of them catering towards different learning styles and skill levels. One example is having students come up with their own solutions for a problem they have been given instead of just solving what is given on the worksheet. This way, students will enjoy creating.
Talk About STEM Every Day!
Try and find opportunities to chat with your child about different STEM concepts, to help them develop an interest in it. For instance, when you’re out for a drive you could ask them if they know how the engine works. If you’re walking the dog together, talk to them about nature and the different plants or wildlife you spot the route. The more you chat about STEM and make STEM fun, the more familiar your child will become with different concepts that will feel less intimidating if they learn about them in school.
The core STEM Subjects and A Few STEM Activities To Do At Home
Cooking and baking are great STEM activities because they involve measuring and weighing ingredients, which incorporates maths skills. There’s also an element of science to it, like when a cake rises in the oven but cannot be returned to it’s original state. It’s a great way to learn while also spending time together as a family and there’s usually a tasty treat at the end of it.
Besides cooking and baking, kids love to get involved in making Slime, or Oobleck at home. It gets them learning about mixing quantities, seeing what the results are, and are both great sensory activities too. Check out how we made Oobleck at home recently.
LEGO is a staple in most homes. Why not get your child to build a LEGO Maze. Consult the LEGO website for Free design templates and ideas.
Alternatively, practice your technology STEM activities by downloading a simple Stop-Motion app on your phone and together with your children, create a stop-motion animation video at home. In this tech-savvy world that our children are growing up in, encouraging them to learn with their technology is key. Many primary schools already teach children the basics of coding, which I personally think is awesome!
Exploring engineering is as simple as playing with building blocks or inventing things. Something like Marble Run is a great activity because your child will have to think about what to attach to their structure next in order to ensure the run actually works and stands up. You should also encourage your child to build forts with their bedding and dens in the garden.
Alternatively, something fun that all kids will love, building with marshmallows and toothpicks you can get the children to practice their Engineering Skills by building a structure using marshmallows and toothpicks. Alternatively, you could swap out the marshmallows for Jelly Beans.
When exploring STEM subjects with your child, I’ll take a guess that Maths is probably the one most of us feel least inspired by. In reality, any counting or puzzle-based activity made fun is a way to encourage your children to embrace maths as a STEM subject. Simply doing puzzles, getting your kids to see shapes in a different way, is a great way to encourage your children to learn STEM subjects at home. Check out these other home learning STEM maths games for children.
It is important for kids to be taught these STEM subjects at an early age because they are more likely to be passionate about them later in life. It will also give them an idea of what they want to do as adults and help them decide on which career path they want to take.
It has been scientifically proven that people who study STEM subjects have higher chances of landing a well-paid job when compared with those who don’t study these subjects or only study humanities and social sciences. However, at the end of the day, we all want our children to be healthy, happy, kind and motivated individuals when they grow up.
I’d be interested to know how you go about exploring STEM subjects with your children at home? Drop me a line below to share – I promise I’ll reply.