Parents that want to create a better future for their children are probably already aware that the STEAM curriculum is something to look for when they’re considering their children’s education. But did you know that there are lots of STEAM activities you can try at home and have a great time while the whole family is together?
It’s known that STEAM methodology can stimulate creativity, problem solving skills, social interactions and self confidence of children. But why not bring that to the comfort of your home and create significant moments with your little explorer? Here are some STEAM activities you can try at home.
What is STEAM?
As you might already know, STEAM is an acronym that stands for Sciente, Technology, Education, Arts and Math. The main idea behind it is to combine these fields as part of a highly differentiated educational methodology. Children learn to study and interact with these fields naturally, since they participate in activities and group dynamics that stimulate the process of learning basic principles that surround these subjects.
Investing in making these topics natural to children is important because this is part of the process of preparing them to adapt to the future of work, as well as excel in work fields that can require that kind of knowledge.
Advances in technology and science have caused major breakthroughs in our present (consider the importance of these two fields during the worst part of the covid-19 pandemic), and investments in these fields are unlikely to slow down. If your child knows how to navigate naturally through these fields and has the confidence that they can apply for jobs in these areas, they can help to build a future that can positively affect us all.
Yes, investing in STEAM as a method of education is a way to broaden the future work possibilities that your child can have!
What does STEAM represent in terms of education?
In practical terms, a child may be more open to learning about physics (a subject that has a harsh reputation) more naturally if they already understand how principles such as gravity, propulsion and attraction work.
And the understanding of these topics can be stimulated through a playtime dedicated to building the miniature rocket and launching it. That is the kind of natural association that is expected with STEAM activities!
STEAM activities to enjoy with your children according to their age
Younger than 1 year old
This is a great time to stimulate children: the first 1.000 days of their lives can create a long term impact and influence the child’s curiosity and willingness to explore. At this stage, it’s really important to stimulate the little one into interacting with different textures, shapes and sensations. Needless to say that having adult supervision is fundamental, as well as making sure the materials used for the experiments are safe to be handled by a 6 month old.
DIY bubble soap
Use the good’n old mixture of soap and water to create bubble soaps and stimulate the child to pop it using their tiny hands or other parts of their body. Stimulate them to react to the popping by laughing and showing that they can transform the original state of things if they want to!
Rolling ramp and different materials
Choose random objects at your house (that are safe to be around the baby, of course). Roll it down in a ramp and show the child that there are differences between the up and down trajectory. Show them that some objects can roll down, some others can’t.
Children between the age of 1 to 3 years old are exploring the world in different ways. They’re more independent, probably already taking their first steps.
This is also the moment to introduce them to textures, formats, and stimulate them to interact with objects; differently than what happens with babies, toddlers might keep their attention on an object for more time, which means they’ll be able to explore more.
Sink or float?
It does not get any more simpler than putting objects in a bowl with water and seeing if they float or sink. This will, of course, depend on the material it is made of. Have your child try to guess if the object will float or sink according to its type!
Shaving cream snow
Easily made activity with objects from our day to day. Simply add shaving foam cream recipient, and then some baking soda. Mix it and create a snow-like mixture! You can shape it into different objects, and have other toys your child already has to interact with the snow or become part of a made up Winter scenery!
3’s and 4’s
By this age, the child will probably have more improved communication skills. That already can differentiate sensations, textures, weight of materials… so this means they’re ready to dig in deeper in STEAM activities that involve more complex concepts.
This is an extra stimulating activity that is easily made at home. An adult squeezes lemon/lime juice and adds it to a bowl. The child then uses a brush or a cotton swab to draw something in a papel sheet. Then we wait until the “ink” is dry.
At a first glance, the paper will not show the drawing. But if you place it by a source of heat, you’ll see what’s drawn there! Since this experiment involves citric acid, do not perform it near the sunlight and wash off with water and soap any leftover citric acid before exposing yourself or the child to the sun.
Now THIS is interesting! One part water and two parts using cornstarch and water, create a fluid that changes its consistency according to the pressure applied to it. If you slowly dive your fingers or hands through this liquid, it will feel like any other dough. But if you push it down suddenly, it will feel solid! Trust us, it’s real!
5 years old
Materials used to stimulate the creativity of the little ones can be a little more complex, which can also mean that they get to participate more in the making of the experiment. They’ll likely be able to ask questions about what’s happening and express their feelings about what’s being demonstrated.
Cloud in a jar
Shaving cream, food coloring, water and a jar: create your own cloud and make it rain! How about trying different colors of food coloring and creating a rainbow of colors?
DIY Scratch Paper
With this activity, children can express their creative side through the color scheme used in the “base” of the paper sheet and also create new multicolored shapes and drawings! Encourage them to use different colors that will pop-out when the experiment is done. Using crayon, color all of the white paper sheet. In a bowl, mix 2 tbsp of black acrylic paint and 2 tbsp of clear detergent. Apply at least two coats of this mixture directly into the paper sheet where the drawing was made using color crayon. Allow it to completely dry! Then use something sharp to draw over the black coat surface and see what new colors you’ll get as you draw!
Are you already inspired to try these experiments with your child and their friends? If you think it’s important to surround your children’s lives with STEAM based projects, you should know that Amazing Explorers Academy’s methodology is based on the STEAM curriculum.
Find out which is the nearest school around you and come visit us!