Maybe your child has expressed an interest in something like chemistry or biology. Maybe they’re a natural with numbers, and you want to help them capitalize on that. Whatever your reasons for encouraging your child in STEM fields, here are just four ways to help them discover their passion for science, technology, engineering or mathematics.
1. Let Them Lead the Way
Don’t force your child into excavating dinosaur bones if they don’t have any interest in paleontology. Don’t make them build a robot if they hate mechanics. While these activities might sound fun to you, they’ll only be a chore if your little one doesn’t have any passion for the subject. Let them follow their own ideas and hobbies.
2. Get Digital
Gone are the days when kids had to look up everything in dusty old encyclopedias. Today, they can follow NASA on Twitter for real-time updates about space, and they can create forums and chatrooms for other kids like themselves from all around the globe. If no one in their class is interested in their new STEM project, someone on the Internet will be.
3. Keep It Age-Appropriate
Unless you have an Einstein on your hands, you’ll need to be careful that your child’s reading material isn’t too far advanced for them. If they start to get confused or frustrated, they might just give up the entire subject. Make sure that they have access to kid-friendly versions of ideas, experiments and theories.
4. Keep Them Engaged
It’s easy for a child to lose interest in something that isn’t fun or exciting, so make sure that their interest in STEM doesn’t fall into this category. Schedule trips to museums and science fairs. Get them involved in local events. Nurture their passion with more than just books and blog posts.
These are just a few tips for raising a smart, science-focused child. Whether they’re interested in theories of the universe or the molecular breakdown of plants, it’s important to encourage their interest in STEM. A hobby today can turn into a career down the line.