Are you interested in doing STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) activities with your child? What’s Your STEM? Activities to Discover Your Child’s Potential in Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math by Rihab Sawah, MS, MA, and Anthony Clark, PhD, is a great resource.
I am a former teacher with an M.Ed. in science education. I am always looking for books that help parents feel more comfortable about doing science at home with their children. But this book is not only for parents; I would also recommend it for use in after school programs, camps, and for homeschooling. It would also be a great for grandparents who want to do something fun with their grandchildren.
What’s Your STEM? is written by a professor of physics and an associate professor of business and economics—they are well-versed in all four areas of STEM. The book begins with the basics of STEM, including the steps to the scientific method. Each area of STEM or field of science is a new chapter: engineering, physics and astronomy, math, etc. The chapters begin with a quick description for the adult reader of what will be studied.
Throughout each chapter are fun activities. Some include “Powering a Boat with Soap,” “Potato, Carrot, and Cell Osmosis,” and “Designing Wallpaper Using Percentages.” Background information is provided in advance of each chapter, so you don’t have to have a background in science or math to help your child with the experiments.
In all, there are 50 activities/experiments to do involving science, technology, engineering, or math. Some are very simple, making them ideal for younger children or a tighter time frame. Others are more complex in concept and/or involve more thought or set up. I liked that there was a variety. That way, regardless of your child’s age, ability, time, or resources, there are many activities that fit his or her needs.
Instead of leaving out what is supposed to happen (which many experiment books for kids do!), Sawah and Clark explain what should happen for each activity. Many activities also have a follow-up experiment or a second part to them to go further in depth with the concept.
An important component to STEM education is how it carries over into careers. Throughout the book are callout boxes telling about a related STEM career, such as astrophysicist, industrial engineer, and database administrator.
At the end of the book is further information about how to involve your child with STEM, such as STEM camps, enrichment classes, and websites.
What’s Your STEM? is great because you don’t need to read it from start to finish. You can do the activities that appeal to you or your child. It’s also a wonderful supplement to your child’s regular science and math curriculum. If your child is studying plants in school, you can do the biology activities to explore the concepts in more depth.
Last, this book opens itself up to inquiry-based learning (a buzzword in the world of science education. Children start with a question or a problem and investigate to find the answer.) If you child enjoyed an activity, can they take it a step further? For instance, after building a bridge from Popsicle sticks, can they create another sturdy design? What are they still curious about?
What’s Your STEM? is a great resource book to own.
What’s Your STEM? Activities to Discover Your Child’s Potential in
Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math
by Rihab Sawah, MS, MA, and Anthony Clark, PhD
What are some books you have enjoyed that address STEM?
Disclosure: Some links provided in this story are affiliate links, Little Lake County earns a portion of purchases made through clicking on those links and use them to support the site. Thank you for clicking. The writer received a complimentary copy of the book in order to facilitate this review. All thoughts and opinions are her own.