When it comes to your child’s education, most children are quite interested in areas like art, music, sports and reading. Interest in math and science, however, may take some cultivating. Here are some ideas for sparking a desire for more knowledge about these topics in your kids.
Show Practical Applications
Sometimes the work being shown on the board at school isn’t being shown to be practical, leading kids to lament that they will ‘never use’ such knowledge. This can lead to bored kids who don’t want to learn these subjects at all or, worse, find them frustrating and baffling. Show how the topic is practical. If you’re building a new patio, show your child how the math works. If you’re balancing the Ph. in the swimming pool or hot tub, explain the process to your child. Even if such practical applications are a bit over their heads, your children will see that the knowledge is useful.
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Kids usually want to ask a thousand questions about every topic imaginable, until their questions are cut off with ‘it’s complicated’ or an exasperated sigh. If your child wants to know how the microwave works or how we can know the number of stars there are, take the time to look up the answers together. Not only will this encourage natural curiosity, it can be great bonding time, too. If you want supplemental education for your kids’ ongoing curiosity, a program that explores STEM like Buckeye Educational Systems is a great option. Also look into offerings at the local community college, as some offer programs for kids of all ages.
Point out Awesome Scientific or Mathematic Achievements
Scientific and mathematical achievements rarely make front-page news, but you can call your child’s attention to them. Whether it’s a discovery, a new invention or an exciting new theory, talk it over with your children with as much enthusiasm as you would show concerning sports teams’ scores or other current events. Young children, especially, get much of their understanding of the world from their parents and their discussions. Talk about topics you want your children to know about and explore. Your child will grow up interested in those topics far more than if you’d never mentioned them at all.
Cultivating interest in science and math can take some work. By keeping these tips in mind, you can expose your kids to STEM and encourage their natural curiosity.