STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) are becoming increasingly important in education and ultimately the workplace. With the majority of the fastest growing careers requiring Math and Science, The Ontario Ministry of Education has taken notice and is evolving the curriculum to focus more in these areas.
However, for some students, STEM is not something they are enthusiastic about. They can find it challenging or not as exciting as other activities like gym or art. Sometimes students are not even aware of the importance STEM will have to them in the future.
Here are some ways parents can make STEM learning fun and engaging. When utilizing any of the ideas below, it is important to first start with your child’s interests, be creative and ask lots of questions.
Highlight Visionaries: Show the impact of people like Steve Jobs, Sheryl Sandberg and Bill Gates have on everyday life with computers, social media and smart phones.
Play Games: There are a ton of wonderful apps to promote science and math learning that are fun. Some of our favourites include: Basket Fall (physics / geometry), Endless Numbers (math / numeracy) and Hopscotch (to promote coding).
Hands On Projects: There are tons of approved STEM related activities that easy to do at home. Here is a list of 40 kid-approved activities to try.
Extracurricular Programs: There is no shortage extracurricular programs and camps in the Toronto area that make science learning fun including the Ontario Science Centre and Mad Science. We would encourage you to do your research on the activity that best fits your child’s interest and personality.
Educational Programming: Watch the Discovery Channel or other educational programming related to science and to see how it relates to everyday life.