November 8th is National Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) day – a non-traditional holiday created by MGA Entertainment in 2015 to highlight critical academic areas. You may not get a paid day off, but we do have some ideas for how you can celebrate National STEM day with your kids.
Here’s an overview:
A fun and cost-effective way to celebrate National STEM Day with younger kids is an apple boat project. Ask your child if they think apples float or sink. Once you get their response, you can test their hypothesis.
Steps to Make an Apple Boat:
That’s it, you’re ready to float! Have your child place the apple boat in a bowl of water to discover what happens. Afterward, explain that apples float because they are buoyant. In other words, the apple has air inside of it that helps it stay afloat. Since apples are less dense than water, they do not sink.
This project not only covers science but introduces elements of engineering too!
What better way to celebrate National STEM Day than to dissect a frog? The good news is you won’t need a dead frog for this one. Instead, you’ll give your kid an early holiday gift – a frog dissection toy.
The kit comes with everything you need to slice into a toy frog and discover its inner workings and biological makeup. It’s an opportunity for your child to learn about science, specifically, biology (without any dangerous sharp objects).
The best part is you won’t have to clean up a mess, and you can re-use the toy for more fun later because it comes with two refill packets.
A STEM course designed for kids is a great way to get your child excited and involved with STEM for the rest of their lives. iCode School offers training across all areas of STEM in a classroom environment with highly-trained and experienced instructors.
As a student in a dedicated program, your child will learn skills that they carry with them into their future careers. They’ll also make new friends because they’ll learn alongside their peers. Once they get started, they’ll be ready to celebrate National STEM Day every year going forward.
Even if you’re just curious about STEM learning, check out iCode School’s programs to see what classes are available for you.
If you’re near a medium to large city (or even smaller towns in some instances) plan a visit to a children’s activity center like the Itty Bitty City.
Activity centers offer loads of STEM-friendly lessons. For instance, you can teach your child about math while they scan toy groceries and collect toy money at the toddler cash register. You can also teach them about engineering while playing with giant building blocks.
When you visit an activity center, you’ll have an entire day’s worth of STEM fun.
Another good way to get involved is to head outdoors to your favorite hiking trail. You’ll get exercise and sunlight, and you’ll come across many teaching opportunities. Plus, going for a walk is free.
As you trot along, point out geological features such as different types of dirt, rocks, and hills.
Show your children how to identify animal prints in the mud, or the markings of deer antlers on trees, and explain how they mark trees to attract mates.
Nature walks offer boundless opportunities for discovery, and you get fresh air. What a great way to celebrate National STEM day.
For those looking to keep it simple (and online), check out a virtual space museum like the one offered by the Smithsonian website Inside, you’ll explore many STEM concepts with a focus on the sciences and engineering.
This is a great way for your child to discover concepts like gravity, aerodynamics, structural engineering, time and navigation, and much more. Once they see all of the possibilities, they’ll be hooked.
Another space-focused activity worth checking out is NASA’s James Webb Telescope website where you can view the latest mind-bending images of the known universe.
An alternative lowkey way to celebrate National STEM Day is to kick it on the couch with a bowl of fresh-popped popcorn, and a fun documentary (keyword: fun).
Skip the boring black and whites and opt for something exciting for kids like Into the Inferno (volcanos) or Codebreaker (artificial intelligence). Neil DeGrasse Tyson’s Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey is a fantastic choice too.
To really step things up, consider a heavy equipment outing with an adventure company like Extreme Sandbox.
Kids need to be at least 10 years old for the Mini Excavator, and 14 years old to operate the larger equipment.
The cool part about this STEM celebration is it’s not just fun for kids. Parents absolutely love playing with construction equipment.
Drive a bulldozer, crush a car, and even ride in a fire truck!
Do it all while learning valuable lessons in engineering with your child. It’s an experience the whole family will remember forever.
Regardless of how you celebrate National STEM Day, we hope you have a ton of fun learning with your kids.
Once the spark ignites, STEM fields can transform your child’s future.
This truly is a lifelong learning experience.
Whether they get interested in digital technologies, math and sciences, or even engineering, the future is bright when you facilitate STEM interests.
If you’d like to learn more about how to enroll your kid(s) in a dedicated STEM training program, we can help with that.
Visit iCode School to discover our kid-friendly programs today!