While teaching students essential STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) concepts in the classroom has become increasingly important to prepare the next generation for a rapidly evolving future, parents can play a crucial part in helping their children develop an interest and passion for these innovative subjects outside of the traditional school environment. Read below for tips to help your child explore STEM after school and over holiday breaks!
Embrace STEM within the home
Because children often explore and discuss STEM topics within an academic setting, it is sometimes difficult for them to realize that these subjects are relevant to their everyday lives. To address this, parents can invite their children to engage in household activities that involve STEM concepts, such as helping in the kitchen. Allowing them to measure and chop ingredients is an effective way to help children observe the practical application of mathematics. In addition, the act of cooking itself is a great way to explain common chemical reactions. To learn more about how you and your children can approach your kitchen as an interactive laboratory, check out this blog post.
One of the most exciting aspects of STEM is its ability to inspire curiosity. Because of their natural curiosity, it’s not surprising that from an early age, research has shown that children are drawn to these subjects. However, as they age, this excitement begins to wane (for both boys and girls) in part due to the passive nature in which these subjects are traditionally taught in school. To correct this, parents can encourage their children to never stop asking questions and foster an environment at home where exploration is embraced. For example, instead of praising your child for positive outcomes like good grades or “correct” answers, reward them for the process they used to reach these outcomes. Doing this will help develop a student’s growth mindset, and the ability to overcome challenges.
For additional ideas, check out our STEM activities
Supplementing your child’s STEM education with engaging at-home activities is a great way to help them understand the relevance of these subjects and develop a passion for learning. Check out our collection of STEM activity blogs to jumpstart your child’s interest in these innovative subjects today!