As parents and educators, it can be difficult to get kids interested in science. As a subject that can seem complex or daunting, getting kids to feel comfortable can often be a point of concern. Kids are naturally inquisitive. They ask questions and have a general desire to understand the things going on around them. In this article, we will discuss the best ways to get kids interested in science.
Getting kids outside, either to explore or to learn, can benefit them in a variety of ways. When children are outdoors, it piques their curiosity and allows them to start naturally inquiring about the world around them. Numerous resources have pointed to the mental and physical benefits of learning outdoors.
Learning outdoors gets kids physically active. This is good for their physical health, mental health and has been linked to increased retention in STEM fields. This physical aspect also allows kids to have fun while engaging in science. This is referred to as disguised learning. By utilizing this learning style, you can encourage your child to explore their interest in science in an environment they are more comfortable in.
Visit Science & Natural History Museums
Visiting science museums or natural history museums is a great way to make exploring science fun and exciting. Science centers often allow hands-on learning experiences that allow kids to explore science concepts and learn through doing rather than seeing. By having access to educational materials and the answers they are searching for, kids are able to spend time learning at their own pace in an exciting environment.
Similar benefits can be found at natural history museums. When thinking about science, many people immediately think of science experiments and lab science careers. There is another side to science that you can introduce to your child to get them engaged. Natural history museums can answer ‘why’ questions and get them thinking about science in a variety of areas of their life.
A benefit to any museum is the introduction it gives to jobs in the science field. Whether your child enjoys fossils or chemistry while at a museum, this can be a great introduction to how their education can one day turn into a job. This connection can be beneficial to kids’ motivation to continue their science education both in the classroom and on their own.
Watch Fun Educational Videos
In the technology era, access to science education tools can be found easily online. This can be used to parent, educator, and students’ advantage when it comes to finding engaging educational videos. Videos are a great way to develop an interest in science as kids are beginning to explore new concepts.
Below are three science education videos to share with your kids:
- Pigskin fun fact
- Field goal post fun fact
- The science behind golf
- How to Create an Origami Ball
- MLB Instant Replay
Videos can be a great way to answer science questions, introduce new learning concepts, or give directions on how to do fun experiments at home. There are a variety of online resources related to science and STEM that should be utilized as a way to get kids interested in science.
Learn Alongside Them
Learning as a family can be a great way to spend quality time learning about science concepts that interest all of you. By finding something that you and your kid find interesting, you guys can explore together through experiments, research, and trips to learn more.
This experience of learning together can show your child how rewarding it can be to learn new things. By giving your child a positive experience in science, you can begin to remove the stigma around STEM that it is hard and scary. By removing this when your child is young, they can feel empowered to continue taking STEM courses throughout their education and even pursue a STEM degree in the future.
Interactive Activities & Games
Learning through play has benefits in many areas of education. Playing allows children to develop their soft skills and 21st-century skills that are becoming more important in the workforce. It allows for collaboration, problem-solving and critical thinking. All three of these things have been linked to a deeper understanding of the lesson and there is a correlation to higher test scores when this style of learning is used.
STEM Sports® uses the unique combination of STEM and sport to get students excited about science. Using hands-on activities, each of our lessons connects a sport to a complex STEM concept. This allows students to see an example of what they are learning in a real-world example. In STEM Basketball, students are tasked with designing a basketball shoe. This allows them to become an engineer and engage with the engineering design process (EDP). Lessons like this increase engagement and understanding around the lesson – while also having fun!
Science Kits and Gifts
Science kits are useful in classrooms, afterschool programs, summer camps, and at home. These kits allow students, parents, and teachers to go through guided science lessons that allow for students to engage in a variety of science and/or STEM concepts that connect to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and Common Core State Standards (CCSS).
STEM Sports® offers science kits and subscriptions that can be used in any environment. The STEM Sports® All-Star Kit is a subscription model that delivers one STEM lesson every month over a five-month period. Each lesson features a new STEM lesson that is taught through a real-life sports example. This can be great for avoiding the summer slump or getting your kid mentally and physically active on the weekends.
How to Get Kids Interested in STEM through Sports
The combination of STEM and sport helps to engage a variety of kids with different learning styles and interests. Whether it is a sports lover engaging in STEM or a STEM lover engaging in sports, it allows for everyone to learn together in a collaborative environment. STEM Sports® offers the following sports to engage kids with a variety of interests:
- STEM Baseball
- STEM Basketball
- STEM Football
- STEM Golf
- STEM Lacrosse
- STEM Multi-Sport K-2
- STEM Multi-Sport
- STEM Soccer
- STEM Softball
- STEM Volleyball
Each of these STEM kits includes eight modules that connect to a different area of the designated sport. With easy-to-follow instructions, the goal is to allow students to lead the lesson and be the facilitator of their own learning. By creating a positive learning experience, STEM Sports® is getting kids interested in STEM during both that lesson and in general.