4 Summer STEM Activities for Kids: Help your children prepare for their futures by incorporating these ideas into their day to get them thinking creatively.
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STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) has become a buzz word in education today. More recently an “A” for art has been added to the acronym (STEAM).
Kids today will be competing for jobs that do not exist yet because of the rapid growth in these areas. Kids will need to be able to think creatively, work cooperatively and problem solve. So how can you help prepare your child for their futures at home? Below are some STEAM inspired activities to get your kids thinking creatively.
So how can you help prepare your child for their futures at home? Below are some Summer STEM Activities for Kids (well, STEAM-inspired) to get them thinking creatively.
4 Summer STEM Activities for Kids
1.) Problem solve every day!
Schools today are seeing children who seem to wait for an adult to solve problems for them. They lack the motivation and perseverance it requires to see a problem through. Provide your child with as many opportunities to solve problems on their own. Let the kids come up with a new way to organize a playroom, bedroom or outdoor space. Help out by providing them with baskets or bins to store items, but let them come up with their own plan and do most of the work. Going to a birthday party? Let the kids plan out the gift, card and where to shop. Let him wrap it himself. The birthday boy won’t mind a sloppy wrapping job.
Kids can be included in all sorts of problem solving activities at home. Include them when planning vacations, home projects or daily activities. Being a part of family planning and problem solving will give them confidence and skills that will carry over into their school life and beyond.
2.) Make creativity a part of your day.
Kids are naturally curious and creative. They just need to be given the opportunity. Set up technology free times in your home. Unplug video games, iPads, and the tv and send them outside. Most kids will find a creative way to fill their time on their own, but some will need a little help to get started.
Save cardboard boxes and other recyclable materials and let the kids build a robot, an outdoor city for matchbox cars or create an obstacle course for Lego people. Set them up with some basic craft materials like glue, scissors, tape and magic markers. For a really fun time, give your kids some old pool noodles, PVC pipes and some outdoor toys. Turn on the hose for some wet, outdoor fun!
3.) Get a STEAM subscription
If you’re not looking to do a lot of work, but really want your kids to get the full STEAM experience, consider a subscription to a monthly STEM/STEAM kit. I love Little Passports Science Expeditions. Kits come monthly and include a comic book with a mystery to be solved. Kids get to complete science experiments to help solve the mystery.
If you’re not looking for the commitment of a subscription, try out STEM inspired toys. I love the Goldieblox series, which features an experiment, a picture book with instructions and characters to accompany the project. Kids can play with the set after building.
4.) Take a class
Like it or not, technology is the wave of the future. In order to get kids prepared for jobs in this field, they need basic computer skills. Luckily, most kids enjoy using computers, iPads, or just about anything that is plugged in. Many schools are introducing basic keyboarding and coding skills as part of their curriculums. Keyboarding skills are essential to success with technology. To get your kids typing, try an online keyboarding program. Websites like ABC-ya and Turtlediary.com offer fun games as well as more challenging typing activities.
Coding is another fun way to incorporate technology into your kids learning. Kids can learn basic coding skills in a variety of places. Many libraries host free coding programs. Your child can also participate in coding activities and courses online at www.code.org.
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