Brought to you by our amazing sponsor, Play-Well TEKnologies, which has offered LEGO-inspired STEM camps for kids for the past twenty years. Wow. More than 100,000 kids each year have benefited from their terrific summer program — maybe yours will be one of them this year?
And if you weren’t already aware, here are 7 benefits of getting kids excited about STEM that you may not have considered.
1. STEM gets kids excited to learn
Every kid is born with an inherent interest in learning. (Who else remembers the Why? Why? Why? phase of toddlerhood in great detail?) STEM is all about answering life’s questions: Where did dinosaurs disappear to? Why does the light bulb goes on when we flip a switch? How does the bridge stay up when we go over it? Why did the cake turn out terrible when we forgot to add baking powder?
When kids’ discover that STEM subjects offer a way to find the answers for their infinite questions, kids get excited to keep questioning, keep learning.
2. STEM breeds curiosity, which strengthens your brain
The brain is like a muscle, and needs exercising to stay strong. STEM keeps those synapses firing, giving kids opportunities galore to work their brains and grow into the fantastic thinkers and problem-solvers we know they can be — and hopefully stay curious forever.
3. STEM teaches kids to fail
No one likes to fail. And yet as every good scientist, teacher, or engineer will tell you, if you’re not failing, you’re not trying hard enough. Failure is essential; trial and error is how kids grow. Plus, those little defeats help them understand early that failing isn’t the end of a project, experiment, or activity…it’s really just the beginning. If there’s no crying in baseball (ha), there’s no quitting in STEM!
About our sponsor
Play-Well TEKnologies is celebrating their 20th anniversary this year of their LEGO-inspired STEM camp program for kids, which introduces children to the world of engineering through play and LEGO. The program has inspired thousands to go into STEM-related fields.
The same way the Play-Well TEKnologies staff is encouraged to be their authentic nerdy selves, Play-Well TEKnologies loves kids to just be themselves — playing, experimenting, trying, failing, and generally getting excited about the things they love, while finding support for their passions all around them.
All thanks to 20,000+ LEGO materials, from basic bricks to motors, battery packs, pneumatics, and gears.
From STEM basics to more advanced engineering and science concepts (who’s up for a fun lesson on gravitational acceleration?) kids will have the confidence to raise their hands when the topics come up in class, months or years later.
4. STEM prepares kids for today’s technology
The “mom doesn’t know how to program the VCR” jokes are pretty much going extinct from here on forward — kids today’s kids are digital natives, growing up with the results of science, technology, engineering, math advancements all around them in their daily life.
With lives that are filled with robotics, screens, satellites, and digital connectivity, an understanding of STEM means giving kids an understanding of the world around us. And, an understanding of the world that’s yet to come. Perhaps…thanks to them?
5. STEM fosters creativity…and creativity requires STEM
There’s a reason that STEM and STEAM (the A is for art) are often used interchangeably — creativity and STEM skills go hand-in-hand. Fashion design requires an understanding of measurements and proportion. Sculpture is an exercise in physics. Architecture is all about engineering and math.
Do you think Play-Well TEKnologies could have built the entire city of San Francisco out of LEGO bricks without STEM? Nope.
And do you think Star Wars could have ever been created without George Lucas having healthy understanding of so many aspects of STEM? No way!
6. Engineers, inventors, scientists, and artists change the world
While there are tons of job opportunities in the STEM fields right now, kids don’t need to be “training” for professions. What’s more important is that they feel empowered to come up with ideas that could make the world the kind of place they want it to be, if only in small ways. And it just so happens that engineering, science, math, technology, coding, and art are the ultimate tools for making change.
7. STEM is cool!
Some of us are old enough to remember the days that math-lovers and science fans were portrayed as geeky dudes in bad clothes, wearing thick glasses and pocket protectors. Well those days are so long gone. Nerds have taken over, they’re cool, and they’re running the world! Who knows — maybe it will be your kid who invents the next Tesla, the next Apple, the next Twitter, the next Sydney Opera House, the next animation trend, or the next life-saving vaccine.
Or, maybe even just the next LEGO invention that makes a kid happy for a day.
We all have to start somewhere.
Thanks to our partner Play-Well TEKnologies for bringing the excitement of STEM through LEGO play to so many thousands of kids each year! For more information on their camps for your kids, check out Play-Well TEKnologies’ fun 20th anniversary video.