You might have heard of the acronym STEM but aren’t really sure what it stands for. STEM represents Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Its an acronym that was begun to address the inadequacy of education for students in these areas and the current and future shortage of skilled workers in these fields. One of my personal goals for this year was to give my daughters more opportunities to explore science around the home. Why? Well we know from research that STEM jobs are higher paid. However we also know that there’s a huge lack of women in these fields, contributing to the gender salary pay gap.
I have to admit at first I had no idea where to start with science for a 2 year old? I was a chemistry and physics girl in high school, but all of my knowledge has since faded and Im not sure that I could apply a whole lot of it to play-based learning. I then searched Pinterest and was largely overwhelmed with the variety of activities, or the complexity of resources required. It wasn’t until I came across @curiouskidsscience that I became truly excited and passionate once again. (PS- I haven’t been paid to say this, I just really love sharing products I am passionate about)
1. Curious Kids Science is owned and operated by a fellow Aussie mother (I love supporting other mums/ women in business)
2. Curious Kids Science had a low cost box full of science experiments that could be delivered to my door with everything I needed!
We loved exploring the chemistry inside our ‘Chemistry in Action’ box so much that I thought id share with other mums that were struggling for science ideas.
Our box came with all the chemicals (all taste-safe by the way) and materials required for:
· Plastic Milk Experiment
· Balloon Experiment
· Volcano Experiment
· Rocket Experiment
· Acids and Bases Experiment
· Eye protection
· Parent Guide
· Record Journal (I didn’t use this although I imagine older children would)
The first and simplest activity was the rocket experiment. This took us only a few minutes to set up and there was enough materials to practice several times. My 2 year old loved the anticipation of waiting for the balloon to fly through the air and we would make predictions about which direction it would go.
Secondly, we tried the balloon experiment. We weren’t quite sure what to expect with this one although you can see the amazement in her face as the balloon inflated from our chemical reaction. “Its magic” she said! We also tried this one several times and occasionally our experiment didn’t work, this was a fantastic opportunity to talk about human error in science and the reasons for attempting experiments multiple times and with slight variations.
Mackenzie’s absolute favourite piece of equipment from the science box was the litmus paper which tested for acids and bases. I explained that the paper could be dipped into any solution and she literally ran around the backyard finding any liquid she could and tested it. For several days later she asked to test all the liquids in our house. This was actually an excellent introduction in to the acidity of our foods and drinks and the damages it can have on our teeth and body.
Thank you @curiouskidsscience for creating such a fantastic resource for busy parents and teachers! Every home should have access to a ‘Chemistry in Action’ box as it really does make Science so quick and easy!