STEM education, or Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics is so important for children, and while you may not think you can teach these topics to toddlers, you can…and it’s incredibly important. I’ve been reading about it lately and trying to incorporate STEM related play into Bryce’s days because of its value. (And the fact that my husband is an engineer certainly helps too!)
Here’s a few reasons on how/why to engage toddlers with STEM learning early on:
Outdoor exploration: we are building a garden in our backyard, planting seeds and watching them grow!
1) It is tailored to their level.
2) It engages littles with “focused fun.”
3) It is hands on.
whether it’s playing with water, exploring at the grocery store, going on a nature walk, getting messy in the kitchen or doing building activities with household items.
4) It is relevant.
uilding ramps to test which cars, balls, or marbles go the fastest or attempting to build a tall tower from blocks or tiles.
5) The obvious real-life implications are big.
This nation’s capacity to innovate and thrive in the modern workforce depends on a foundation of math and science learning. What’s more, a staggering 80% of the fastest growing occupations in the US depend on the mastery of mathematics and scientific skills, but students aren’t equipped to satisfy this growing need. In fact, over the past decade, growth in STEM jobs was 3x greater than that of non-stem jobs. (And even if a career in STEM isn’t being pursued, a basic level of STEM knowledge is needed to navigate other fields of work.) So laying the foundation for STEM concepts early on will help fuel their interest and knowledge base as they continue to grow.
Other STEM-related resources to bookmark:
–Snapology.com: Snapology engages children ages 1-14 using LEGO® bricks, K’Nex and technology, and is the premier partner for STEAM programs, offering year-round programs in schools, community facilities, homes and in our Discovery Centers (select locations only). Perfect for things like birthday parties, field trips, summer camp, you name it!
-Free Science Activities for all Ages (search by infant, toddler, preschool, elementary)
–The 6 Reasons Your Kids Need Fewer Toys: Getting Started With Toy Minimalism (we are working on this now, and are focusing on toys that spark creativity and innovation rather than single-use, close ended toys)
–STEM Education & Activities for Preschoolers
–The Case for Engaging Children in STEM Education Early
And now the fun part…I’m giving away a little something to spark the love of STEM learning: a LEGO® brick set of the Snapology Mascot Sebastian Gator! (age recommendation is 6+)
Want to enter? Just leave me a comment answering this question: What STEM-related activities do you do with your littles? Do you outdoor play, fun experiments, creative play with blocks/tiles, attend classes like the ones at Snapology.com, etc.)
And you can get an extra entries by following me on each of these…just leave a separate comment letting me know you did! Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram | Bloglovin’
Winner will be chosen 1 week from today at random and notified. US only please. This giveaway is a partnership with Nakturnal.
UPDATE: Giveaway closed. Congrats to Stephanie!
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We do creative play with blocks and tiles.
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We just played with blocks this weekend!
Victoria Domisty Menius says
We like playing games & doing experiments
play is so important. Things like this are so awesome! We are always trying different ways to engage our little.
I take my little ones to the park all the time. Outdoor exposure and activities were really important to my family when we were kids. We also sometimes do easy science experiments to get the kids interested. Their favorite is still the milk, food coloring, and dish soap one because they love the “magic” of the colors.
Children learning STEM these days is indeed crucial! My almost three year old nephew and I love to build puzzles, construct towers out of blocks (and obviously get the enjoyment out of knocking them down!), and build blanket forts.
We like to take our little ones to the local science center where they can play and learn with fun experiments!
Educational play is the key. Snapology has it right!
Agree 100%. Thanks for reading Kayla!
Sounds like a great way to start them on science young!
Doug Sirkoch says
Very interesting read. Hands on is defiantly the best way to learn though.