Wednesday 16 September 2020

Exploring STEM Subjects with Your Child


STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths and is becoming increasingly more popular recently. Parents are starting to learn a little more about it and why it is so important for children and there are even lots of STEM based toys on the market to stimulate learning for toddlers. Graduates with STEM qualifications are faced with a wide range of career opportunities, from nursing to astronomy, so there’s no wonder that parents are so keen to help their children progress in these areas. But how? There are lots of things you can do, as explored below by an Early Years’ school in Kent.

Start by making these subjects something you talk about on a regular basis within your household, so that your child become more familiar with them. For instance, if you read about a medical breakthrough in the news, share it with your family at dinner time. Next time you’re out for a drive with your child, chat to them about the vehicle and what makes the engine work or how the car moves. When you go shopping, encourage your child to work out how much the price will be once you get to the till and how much change you’ll need if you’re paying with cash. Essentially, the trick is to demonstrate how important the STEM subjects are in everyday life. 

Jigsaws and board games are great for improving problem-solving skills and sometimes even basic numeracy. Monopoly, for instance, encourages players to carry out simple sums. Other STEM-based activities around the home are things like cooking, which involves an element of science and maths, gardening, or even something as simple as bird watching. Water based play is great for younger children as it can teach them about the different materials and whether the sink, float or absorb the water. Older children might be interested in buying a telescope and learning about space. 

The idea is to encourage curiosity within your child so that they learn about the world around them, so don’t turn them away if they come to you with some thoughtful questions. Try and refrain from doing the same activity over and over again and, instead, explore different games and experiments to stimulate their learning. 

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