Monday 14th - Friday 18th March 2022
S.T.E.M Fair: Wednesday 16th March
What is a cloud? Why do boats float? How does a car work?
As a parent/guardian, you could hear 100 questions like this every day. Learners have such a wide-open curiosity about the world, you may have caught yourself wishing you understood more about the science of clouds or bridge engineering or botany yourself—just to explain things!
Despite the ravenous interest so many children have in STEM topics (science, technology, engineering and math), that enthusiasm tends to fade as they get older. But with STEM careers making up a huge part of today’s (and likely the future’s) economy, it’s our duty to feed that fire of interest.
STEM activities need to be introduced early on because in today’s age of information, the ability to innovate, be technologically fluent, and understand how and why things work together is incredibly important.
So, we would love you to support your child/ren in creating their very own STEM project for our STEM fair which will be held in the school hall on WEDNESDAY 16TH MARCH and available for you to see after school!
But finding STEM projects for kids the average parent or teacher can facilitate is not always easy. Fortunately for you, we’ve taken care of the guesswork and compiled a list of 11 simple STEM activities for children you can employ as early as Nursery!
Of course you can choose your own project, and the more creative and varied the better!
Ideas from our 2020 STEM Fair!
1. Cloud in a Jar
Condensation, water cycles and states of matter all get some attention with this delightful activity. A few simple household ingredients (water and hairspray) come together to demonstrate the formation of a cloud for kids.
2. Oil Spill
Why not try an activity that will connect back to real issues? In this activity, you simply mix oil and water in a large container and add a few feathers to the mix. Then pass out materials like sponges, paper towels or little spoons and instruct the children to try to remove the oil from the water and feathers.
3. Sticky Note Number Match
With a sheet of paper taped to the wall, some sticky notes and a marker, you can set up this movement-oriented math activity to help kids understand the meaning of numeric values. Instead of memorizing lists of numbers, this “game” lets kids hunt for sticky note numbers and stick them on the wall over the grouping of dots (or stars or banana stickers, if you like) that matches the number.
4. Coding a LEGO® Maze
In this activity, children can begin to learn the basics of coding. This activity from ResearchParent offers suggestions on how to scale the activity down for younger kids, as well as how to complicate it for elementary school and even middle school children.
5. Crystal Sun Catchers
Making crystals with salt is a popular kid’s science activity—for good reason! The ingredients are cheap, available at the grocery store—and the results are lots of “Ooooh’s” and “Ahh’s” from your kiddos.
6. Building a Hand Crank Winch
This STEM project is perfect for those kids who love to get crafty and learn how things work. The concept of the winch is a perfect way to build an early sense of how people can build awesome things with simple machines like pulleys.
7. Build a Balance Scale
This activity involves a plastic hanger, some cups and string. Make your young ones a hanging balance they can use to experiment with weights. Or, if you have an older child—enlist their help in building the scale as well!
8. Magnetic Slime
Homemade “slime” activities are a staple for many parents and educators looking for a fun tactile activity. This variant adds a splash of science by adding iron oxide powder and magnets into the mix. Getting the slime consistency right can be a little tricky, but most issues can be resolved with either adding more glue or more liquid starch. Once the starch is ready, you’ll need a strong neodymium magnet (or more) to start manipulating the slime.
9. Jellybean Building
All you’ll need is a pile of jellybeans (or large marshmallows) and toothpicks for your student or child to start learning about structures. By connecting toothpicks with jellybeans, encourage your child to see which shapes hold together well, which shapes stack well and which shapes are most interesting to look at.
10. Pipe Cleaner Counting
For the student or child just learning to count, understanding that numbers increase in size can be confusing. With just pipe cleaners and beads, you can help your child learn to count while also getting a visual of how numbers increase in size. Simply take small pieces of paper and label each pipe cleaner with a number. Then, have your child order the pipe cleaners from smallest to greatest and start stringing on the correct number of beads while counting aloud.
11. Stop-Motion Animation Video
Here’s an excellent option for creative STEM learning. We’ve all seen the fun stop-motion videos online, but you probably never thought of creating one yourself or, better yet, with your kids. With just a few objects, a smartphone or iPad® and a stop-motion app, your kids can learn about the technology behind movie-making and create a video unique to their own likes and interests