|The April 2014 #STEMchat Sponsor|
There’s still nearly a week left to enter the 2014 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge and if you’re looking for last minute ideas or tips to inspire your child to be named America’s Top Young Scientist, keep reading!
This chat was so robust, the summary of tips to raise wonderful young scientists will be presented in two parts. This post contains affiliate links.
How to Raise a Young Scientist, Part I
How do you teach your child to identify problems—or more importantly potential solutions?
Blog post on the topic at Engage Their Minds “How ‘why’s’ can make you wise.”
Foster problem-solving practice, encourage struggle, give them space.
Have kids read the newspaper and choose topics or stories of interest
Ask children questions that lead up to identifying problems.
Let them fail and learn to recover and move on. Failure = data and opp for learning. Video games can be helpful for this, hard to level up without failing.
Revisions are part of the process.
Listen, really listen to them, encourage them to ask questions and take time to help them find the answers themselves.
Allow time and space for hands-on learning and exploration.
Instead of fixing broken things for them, have them do it themselves.
Have them draw solutions. This is sometimes better than talking.
Ask them how things work. Help them see the STEM that is all around us.
Challenge them to turn complaints in to solutions.
Encourage natural curiosity.
Don’t give answers, help them find them.
Encourage: creativity, asking questions, problem-solving.
Studies show that interest in STEM starts to wane in middle school. How do you keep kids engaged at this age?
Help them understand that if they know how the world works, you can make and fix things
“Step aside and be the guide.”
Rachel Carson’s book, The Sense of Wonder
How do you help kids ask questions about things in their everyday life so they look beyond the lab or classroom?
Be a model of lifelong learning.
Include cool robots, physics/chem show at school assemblies and pep rallies.
Turn off the TV talk as a family, play games, get outside.
For HS kids, game design is a strong incentive for learning how to code.
Apollo 13 to see ho the astronauts improvised with stuff on hand to save their mission (and lives).
How It’s Made
Quincy, ME (old show; I loved it as a child)
Poisoner’s Handbook from PBS
coming out in late summer 2014).
Present students with STEM role models taking care to include women and minorities in STEM.
Read about real students and their efforts.
Entrant to the Young Scientist Challenge share their ideas with a video. How do you help your child hone his/her communication skills?
Leel Lefever’s The Art of Explanation: Making your Ideas, Products, and Services Easier to Understand.
One teacher mentioned starting a TED-Ed Club next year.
Help them be themselves and let personality shine through.Practice again and again)!
Show them good presentations and videos.
Record your kids talking unscripted. Have them review it, take notes and try again.
Get them used to making brief, impromptu presentations. They will get better/more confident over time.
Help them prepare outlines.
Let them know it’s okay to make mistakes–there’s always room for improvement.
Let kids report on area of interest, passion to let enthusiasm shine through.
Let them use technology to present ideas- Power Point, Scratch, blogs, email or go old school with live skits.
Use art: comic books like @CMTribull does here.Watch great YouTube channels like The Brain Scoop for example of relaxing and talking science casually. Also recommended: V Sauce, Vi Hart, Explainer TV and Numberphile.