Grow something: Buy your kids an Algae Culture Kit and help them culture their own algae. Growing Algae is a great way for your kids to learn about biology. Algae grows extremely fast and in the future algae-based products will start replacing products that are currently made from fossil fuels. This means that in the not too distant future we could be wearing clothes that are made out of algae. If your kids don’t believe you, check out Dr Mark Liu, a Fashion Designer, who is pushing the boundaries by designing a more environmentally friendly fashion scene. Mark has collaborated with Samsung for its national competition This is a STEM Job – which aims to show students the amazing jobs that STEM skills can lead to.
Designer Dr Mark Liu pictured here is making clothes with algae. Yes really! Learn more from him and show your kids there is more to STEM than meets the eye.
Let them play video games: We know what you’re thinking, but some video games can actually be a really great way to get your kids testing their brains. If your kids haven’t played Minecraft, you should definitely get them to check it out. The game gives users an infinite set of blocks to build anything they want from the simplest of homes to the grandest of castles. For more advanced gamers, you can dig deeper into the code of Minecraft and start re-programming the world you build. The game encourages your kids to use problem solving and think creatively all while giving them a taste of coding. It is a great time filler for those dreaded rainy days in the holidays.
Experiment with 3D design: From the geometry of the 3D model, to the coding of the slicing software involved in 3D modelling, to the mechanisms and material science of the printer, STEM makes 3D printing possible and this will be an extremely relevant skill in the future for most industries. Download Tinkercad and get your child to have a play around – they will be hooked in no time.
Try stargazing: This could be a perfect activity if you are planning on going camping! There are many phone apps that can help to make this experience fun and engaging like Star Walk Kids and Solar Walk. If your kids have some time to kill in the car on your way back from camping, get them to watch the documentary “Cosmos” which will help them understand the cosmic scale of the universe. If your night of stargazing piques their interest and suddenly your child wants to become an astronaut, get Kerbal Space – a computer game which uses a real physics engine and lets you build rockets before launching them into space.