As a the mama of three, former middle school educator and educational policy legislative aide, encouraging STEM education is a subject that is close to my heart. It’s becoming more and more important in this technologically advanced age that we prepare our children to be awesome and equip to thrive in this world. We want to give them every advantage possible as such I am a wholehearted proponent of student-centered, engaged education, hands-on learning with the aim of building strong, confident, life-long learners.
So let’s break it down and chat about why it matters and what fun giveaway we have for you.
What is STEM?
STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. It’s the foundation of the modern age and became a presidential initiative for American students in 2011. For many years preceding that point, it had been noticed that too few American students, particularly girls, were entering these fields and that our nation’s academic preparation was not where it needed to be to create globally competitive students.
Why it matters?
According to the US Departments of Labor and Homeland Security, in 2018 approximately 1.2 million jobs in the STEM fields will be available in the United States. But it is also noted that there will not be enough qualified applicants available. STEM Education aims to correct that problem. It also actively works to create more opportunity, increased access and prosperity for our children, students and communities.
How to Encourage your Child (and yourself)?
STEM education is luckily something that is easily integrated into your everyday life (I feel the teacher in me coming out). So many of the things that you already do and enjoy are STEM related, and it is an easy step to intentionally increase your child’s exposure, awareness and enjoyment of STEM activities.
In Everything and Everywhere
Science is everywhere from the baking of their favorite cookies, tracking our fickle Texas weather to creating the goop that the kids are gaga about. Math is in everything from the money that they spend, the games they play to the food that we eat. Just as engineering and technology are also everywhere these days, and is a hands on activity that kids love to engage in — including my kids’ beloved Legos, Monster High Dolls, Minecraft, MC2 and Sol’s custom-made Beyblades.
Luckily, Dallas is chock full of family-friendly hubs that encourage STEM. Some of our favorites are the fun that the team at Snapology (coming soon to Dallas), the Perot Museum, Texas Discovery Gardens, the National Videogame Museum in Frisco and the SPARK programs supply for our children. Click the links above for easy access.
(sponsored in partnership with Nakturnal)
Simply COMMENT below with your favorite way to incorporate STEM activities into your children’s lives for a chance to win a sweet LEGO playset.