Have you heard of STEM? It stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (or Maths as we call it), and it’s a huge buzz word at the moment. Everyone (including us) is excited about coming up with ideas to teach STEM in a hands-on, applied, integrated way. It’s about much more than learning facts and figures. Instead it’s about presenting challenges and helping kids come up with their own solutions, developing the sort of critical thinking skills that will be needed in the future workforce. Plus, this type of learning is much more fun!!
But an even bigger buzzword than STEM is STEAM.
STEAM (or STEM + Art) are activities that include an artistic or creative element, in addition to one (or more) of the traditional STEM pillar subjects. It could be creating art using STEM tools. It could be creating an engineering project where you take particular attention to aesthetics. It could be… any number of things really. The key is that it must cross the curriculum and encourage critical thinking skills in a meaningful way.
Importantly, STEAM projects tend to make STEM subjects more interesting and relevant for the artistically inclined. There’s a belief that STEAM will encourage more kids, and more girls in particular, to like STEM.
My own girls love art and craft, and I find we’re doing more and more STEAM activities. You can find some of our own STEAM ideas, and STEAM activities we love, below!
(We also do some activities which I like to call “Science Crafts“, which are essentially a cute craft, but with a science aspect. Initially there’s not as much critical thinking going on as might be with a more traditional STEAM challenge, but I’ve found these activities are a great way to introduce science concepts and vocabulary in a way that my girls can relate to. You can find all our fun science craft ideas here.)
STEAM Activities for Kids on Go Science Girls
We’re doing lots of STEAM activities lately in the Go Science Girls household (I just have to find time to write them up, lol!), so be sure to check back regularly for more!
Want even more STEAM project ideas?
Here are some of the STEAM projects I love from around the net:
- How to make a kaleidoscope, from Buggy and Buddy.
- How to build a LEGO spin art machine, from Planet Smarty Pants.
- Easy pendulum painting idea, by Hand Made Kids Art.
- Design a Qixel robot, by Picklebums.
- Easy chromatography butterfly craft, by Buggy and Buddy.
- Use binary to code your name in jewellery, from Mama Smiles.
- Make a homemade pantograph drawing machine, from Teach Beside Me.
- Fibonacci art project, from What Do We Do All Day?
- Shadow art, by Rhythms of Play.
- Create marbled milk paper art, from Babble Dabble Do.
I collect even more ideas on our STEAM Pinterest board.
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