(SPONSOR CONTENT) – Children are naturally curious and eager to make sense of their world. While exploring in the park or playing with toys, kids discover new things, make observations, and come to you with their questions.
You don’t need a degree in science or engineering to play a crucial role in shaping your child’s learning. When you approach the world with curiosity and a willingness to explore, whether you’re helping your child solve a problem or build a tower out of blocks, you can spark an interest in science, technology, engineering, and math.
Check out these tips to encourage learning and family fun through science and engineering:
Encourage your child to ask questions in school. Each morning, challenge your child to ask a question in school and check back at the end of the day to see if he or she did it. Just asking questions has been shown to make kids more interested in their learning in school.
Share in your child’s discoveries. Ask your child to share one idea or lesson he or she learned in school. Here are questions to start the conversation: Can you tell me about something new you learned today? What questions did you ask in science class? What new idea did you think about today?
While watching TV, ask your child: What science and engineering careers do you see? What kinds of problems or issues do scientists and engineers address? Do scientists work alone or in teams? What hobbies or interests do you think engineers and scientists have outside their work?
Take time to explain the science behind the objects and activities around you. Here are questions that can start a conversation and support learning: How do the gears on your bike work? What makes popcorn pop? Why do you get dizzy when you spin really fast?
Support your child’s interests. Your child’s interests may become talents. Note what topics your child discusses and activities he or she chooses to do. You can help your child find resources, such as books or camps, to learn more.
Research shows that intelligence can be developed with effort. As a parent, you can teach your child that the brain is like a muscle that gets stronger and works better the more it is exercised. By supporting this kind of growth mindset, you will encourage your child to want to learn new and challenging things. In the face of challenges, children with a growth mindset are more likely to be persistent and successful.
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