POSTED BY ANGSHUMAN DAS
What’s your child’s favorite class in the school? The common responses that we receive are games class, music class etc. Though these classes have their own benefits but science, math and other STEM-related subjects are not often cited as favorites. Changing how children feel about STEM can make a world of difference as they move through primary school and into middle school, high school and college.
What is STEM?
Before we dive too far into how to get children’s interest in STEM, it’s important to define what it is. STEM is a buzzword that gets tossed around a lot, but some parents and children may not fully understand what it means.
STEM is an acronym that stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. But I would like to think of STEM as much more than an acronym. STEM really is a philosophy. STEM is a critical way of thinking about how teachers at all levels—including parents—should be helping students incorporate knowledge across disciplines, encouraging them to think in a more connected and universal way. All children has math and science classes in School. They may even have an occasional technology class at the primary level. But STEM isn’t essentially one specific theme, degree or education program. General STEM concepts are often included in the primary curriculum, although technology and engineering concepts are often severely lacking in the regular school curriculum.
Why robotics should be introduced at early level of education?
During the initial years of early childhood, children need a playful and real way to engage with the technology and engineering concepts of their STEM development. Various robotics and computer programming initiatives are quickly growing in popularity among early childhood researchers and teachers as an appropriate way to meet this demand. Here are five reasons why robotics and coding can greatly benefit learning and development for children ages four years and above.
⦁ Improved Cognitive, Fine Motor, and Social Development: Recent research has shown that when robotics is introduced in primary school classrooms, children’s early development is stimulated in ways that can’t be duplicated through other techniques. Working with robots gets children moving and improve their thought process, even as they engage with engineering and programming. Movement and play are especially critical for education in early childhood.
⦁ New Opportunities for Creative and Critical Thinking: When children experiment and engage with robotics, they transform from children into engineers and storytellers. While playing with motors and sensors or creating personally significant projects that react to their environment, these children are unlocking their imaginations and their problem-solving potential. Through simple commands, young students can see their story come to life through their programming. It’s very powerful for developing their understanding of principles as well as the complete engineering design process.
⦁ Safe Introduction to Technology domain: We live in an digital world, one that can sometimes feel daunting to all
parents concerned about their young children’s interaction with technology. By presenting the capabilities
of coding and programming through approachable and engaging robotics, educators can feel secure that they’re
building a positive connection between their students and the technology of their modern world.
⦁ Hands-On Lessons with Real-World Applications: The young children interact with robot-like electronics every day, but they may not understand the engineering behind why and how they work. From automatic doors to public hand dryers, the same technology that children regularly encounter can be explored through hands-on engagement with robots and sensor technology. By teaching basic programming concepts, along with robotics courses, we can introduce our children to important ideas that will help them in their understanding of many of the everyday objects they interact with.
⦁ Fun and Inspired Learning: Children are naturally very inquisitive. They’re eager to interact with and understand the world around them. Finding the happiness and wonder in their learning is their default inclination, so the most successful teachers or trainers help their students have fun with their learning. Through natural play and a trial-and-error approach to coding, children are more likely to learn and grow, and do so in ways that teachers aren’t able to anticipate. Oftentimes, the most delight that a child experiences with their learning is when they figure out something for themselves.
Finally, Robotics help and encourage our children to know more about STEM concepts. STEM activities aren’t so much about planning lots of tasks that require specific materials and processes; it is more about developing learning habits of inquiry and critical thinking skills. The sooner a child is introduce to the world of Robotics, the sooner a child will begin to ask their questions and draw their conclusions. As we enter the next industrial and technological revolution, our children’s education must be tailored to keep up with the times.