How to Nurture Your Child’s Love of STEM Projects
You can nurture your child’s love of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) by offering various activities, programs and schools for them to learn from. Related fields are on track to dominate in the future, and helping your kids develop their interests can set them up for success.
Many resources are available to help nurture your child’s love of STEM projects and encourage their interest in related fields. Here are some of them, as well as some fun activities you can do together.
Make Learning Fun
Children are curious by nature — they always have questions. Foster their curiosity by creating opportunities for them to have fun and learn simultaneously. Kids have different learning styles, but enjoyment appeals to everyone. Making things interesting can help them develop a relationship with education they can carry throughout their lives.
A love for knowledge can change your child’s life and instill a sense of purpose and direction for their path into adulthood. There are many ways that you can make learning fun for kids. Use your imagination and create games that help teach your child, like making a sandbox out of a pencil holder for them to trace sight words into the sand.
Another fun idea is to make a color sorter with pipe cleaners and a potato chip can. Teach your kids about shapes with blocks, and then let them build their own with Popsicle sticks. Incorporate STEM projects into the mix with dominoes to help them learn math and any other ideas you can think of to help your child connect to real-world situations in a fun and creative way.
Nurture Soft Skills
Nurture your child’s soft skills like problem-solving and teamwork to prepare them for STEM work. These are essential and can prepare kids to learn more hard knowledge. Soft and hard skills are necessary for the future generation to succeed.
Developing soft skills can help children perform better academically. You can encourage your child to learn and practice in situations in their daily lives, like when they play outdoors and decompress after a long day at school. Putting puzzles together frequently can help children build their problem-solving skills.
Identify your child’s strengths and weaknesses so you can prioritize which skills to focus on developing. Pay attention to their interests and what they like to do. Teach them things they won’t learn in school, like manners, empathy and self-control. These soft skills and effective communication can equip your child with a solid foundation to build upon.
Explain the necessity of STEM to your child and how they can benefit from it. They may not have adequate exposure to the opportunities in these fields of study without your guidance.
The future for STEM skills is promising, so if your child is interested, foster their education and growth in these subjects as much as possible. Take them to museums and enroll them in programs encouraging STEM education that can inspire your child to grow and explore avenues that best suit them.
STEM Project Ideas
Finding STEM projects that apply to all ages can be challenging. Here are some activities children can enjoy from an early age. Experiencing and observing them rather than listening to an explanation can nurture children’s love for them.
Cloud in a Jar
You can tailor this activity to younger or older kids. Teach older ones about the connection between the project and the clouds in the sky. Younger children will likely just enjoy the experiment.
Pour some hot water into a jar and place the lid upside down on top. Put some ice cubes on the lid, leave them for about 20 seconds and then spray some hairspray inside the jar. Replace the cover with the ice still on top and watch a cloud form and appear inside the jar. Remove the lid and watch the water vapor escape into the air.
Crystal Sun Catchers
Use hot water and Epsom salt to create crystals. Stir equal amounts of hot water and salt for about two minutes in a glass jar. Pour the mixture into clear plastic lids and place them in the sun to dry. Ensure you don’t overfill the caps by pouring off excess liquid.
Allow them to dry and crystallize for a few hours to a day. Carefully poke a hole in the lids to put a string through and then hang up wherever you like. The crystals will sparkle in the sunlight. These are very fragile suncatchers and only last for a limited time. They are a fun learning experience for kids, but you should handle them carefully and make extras if they break while hanging them up.
Foster Your Child’s Love of STEM Projects
STEM industries are in high demand, so the need for workers is also growing. Nurturing your child’s love for STEM projects will set them on the road to success by fostering their ambitions and possibly securing their future.
About the Author
Ava Roman (she/her) is the Managing Editor of Revivalist, a women’s lifestyle magazine that empowers women to live their most authentic life. When Ava is not writing you’ll find her in a yoga class, advocating for her children or whipping up something delicious in the kitchen!