We at The Made for More Project just love the aspect of STEM because it provides children of all ages a chance to delve deeper into Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. It provides hands-on, logical types of learning activities that resemble real-life situations to engage children. In our current world where technology is moving in leaps and bounds and even toddlers are naturally picking up on STEM activities, we see the importance of how this philosophy of education can truly benefit our children’s development. Especially when you have children that tend to be drawn to learning and using STEM, it naturally makes sense to feed those curiosities. Sometimes getting children who are not necessarily excited about these subjects to participate in STEM activities and programs can actually spark a love for, or at least a better understanding of STEM concepts making it easier for these students when they do have to apply these concepts in school.
While the STEM philosophy of teaching has been around for a while most often parents don’t really know much about STEM and how to incorporate it into learning. So let me first outline what STEM is. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics and the disciplines associated with teaching these subjects. STEM education goes as far as to combine these different subjects into a well-rounded curriculum of learning where the focus is more on hands-on projects and inquiry-based learning that mimic real-life rather than standardized curriculum and testing. In more recent years, the focus has become on STEAM rather than STEM and here’s why. STEAM includes the importance of Art into the combination of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math and how Art provides an additional outlet of learning (think Right Brain/Left Brain learning scenarios). Plus, studies show participation in STEAM activities is associated with significant gains in a child's ability to:
Develop critical thinking and analytical skills
Express complex ideas accurately and clearly
Solve problems creatively
Collaborate and empathize with others
Take the initiative to produce ideas, designs, and products that are novel and valuable
Here at The Made for More Project we especially enjoy the Art portion of STEAM. It allows us to expose children to a wide variety of activities that teach the fundamentals of Art, which allows them to look at the world from a different perspective. Did you know that when we get stuck learning something new it’s because the brain is sending signals over and over again through the same, let’s just say route, in our brains? But when we change our perspective or try something different for a while, then go back to what we were previously trying to learn, we force our brains to send the information down a different path which can make learning something new easier. Art is all about trying something new, and including it in our children's learning experiences can only help them when they need to change their perspective, when they are bored, or when they are having a hard time processing other subjects like Math and Science
! Exposing children to Art programs also helps build a child’s confidence not only in creating Art itself but in experimenting with new things. Because Art is not about being perfect it allows children to make mistakes and create anything they want without the hindrance of having the correct answer or following outlined requirements.
And this is why The Made for More Project prefers to offer programs that incorporate STEAM rather than just STEM activities.
So, have you heard of STEAM? And if so, why do you like STEAM education?
Want to incorporate STEAM activities into your child’s everyday learning? Check out our 10 STEAM-powered Activities Any Family Can Do.