What is STEM?

Wh?t i? STEM? STEM – what exactly is it? Do you know what it means, and how it can help your children? And how do you make STEM part of their lives? Simply put, STEM is ? ?r?gr?m d?v?l???d t? ?r???r? school ?tud?nt? for further ?tud? in th? fields ?f S?i?n??, T??hn?l?g?, Engineering, and M?th?m?ti?? - this is where the STEM acronym comes from. Traditionally seen as difficult and boring subjects, STEM is changing the way children (and us parents) view those more technical topics. As well as focusing on those specific subjects, STEM ?im? t? foster in?uiring minds, l?gi??l r????ning, ?nd ??ll?b?r?ti?n ?kill?. All of which are vital for our children’s success in today’s modern world. As a nation our recent history shows that students have been losing interest in the core STEM topics, graduates in STEM industries are on the decline, and this needs to change. STEM is generally now used to describe any learning that happens in any of the core areas, including toys and activities which focus on those areas. At the heart of STEM is the idea that the core subjects should not be taught as stand-alone and separate subjects, but rather that each of them is connected to the other three, and real-world applications are the perfect way to show this to young learners. We want to inspire the children of today to continue their study of STEM, showing them STEM subjects are not only interesting, fun and engaging, but also they are vital for our society and provide a huge area of opportunity which they will have access to as adults. As well as the obvious 4 core subjects, STEM educators (that's you parents!) further break down the STEM concept into skill sets: To learn and apply ??nt?nt To int?gr?t? content To int?r?r?t ?nd ??mmuni??t? inf?rm?ti?n To engage in inquiry To eng?g? in l?gi??l reasoning To collaborate ?? a t??m To a??l? t??hn?l?g? ???r??ri?t?l? Now these skill sets might seem overly complicated for a preschooler to grasp, but (and here is where the magic of STEM happens), when you stop and watch a group of preschoolers squeal with delight as they pour vinegar into a baking soda volcano, learning how to mix the two to produce that wonderful foamy mess, you see the incredible amount of STEM learning that is happening without you even realising. Teamwork, communication, asking questions and finding answers, application, interpretation...the list goes on. Now that we have established what STEM learning is, you want your children to experience more of it. How can you do this? There are many children's’ toys available which encourage and foster STEM learning; here at Play Rhino, we have collated a selection of the best STEM toys to make your life easier. Take a look through our website and imagine the joy your child will experience while they are learning STEM