STEM activities are home-based activities that help children to understand how the actual world works. They involve hands-on projects that kids can also do in the classroom or by creating such conditions at home. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, and these activities evolve around these disciplines. Some are simple, and they can be undertaken by the kids alone, but others may require parental guidance or the help of older siblings. With Spring fast approaching, here are ten awesome Spring STEM activities in which kids can participate.
10. Make a mini–Water Cycle Model
Water undergoes a continuous process that forms the water cycle. The cycle involves three steps:
- Evaporation- Water in different sources (lakes, rivers, and seas) is heated by the sun, turns into vapor, and rises into the air.
- Condensation- The evaporated water cools back into tiny drops when it reaches the clouds.
Precipitation- The condensed water accumulates into huge drops which fall back to the earth’s surface as rain. Kids can do this process by using:
- A plastic bowl
- Cling film
- A mug
Steps to Make a Water Cycle Model
Place your mug in the bottom part of the bowl. Around the mug, add water until up to 2/3 of the mug. Tightly cover your bowl in a clingfilm. You can use the string to fasten the cover. Let the kid watch the process after you place the covered bowl in the sun. The water will evaporate, making droplets on the cover, and they will later fall back into the bowl, demonstrating the water cycle.
9. Air Drying Flowers
Kids can dry flowers and use them for decoration purposes. Dry flowers are also more durable than wet ones; the best way is to air-dry them. To undertake this activity, you need:
- Flowers of your choice
- The process is straightforward, and it involves the following steps:
Remove any foliage from the flowers’ stem, leaving some leaves if you want the flower to remain green. Group the flowers as you wish and tie the string at their base. You can cut them to the appropriate size if they have a long stem. Attach the flowers to a stick. Hang the stick with flowers at a point where you are sure the delicate ones are not exposed to destruction. After hanging them, let them dry. To keep the flowers’ structure, spray them with unscented spray.
8. Making a Home-made Wind Vane
As spring approaches, there are several weather changes, and it’s appropriate that your kid knows how to make a weather vane that will help them to tell the direction of the wind. The activity is appropriate for kids who are in preschool and elementary levels. You shall need;
- A straw
- Unsharpened pencil
- Circular plastic empty container
- Ball pin
- One sheet of cardstock
- Refrigerator magnet
- Small square pieces of Styrofoam
- An X-acto knife
Your kid can watch the step-by-step-making procedure on YouTube.
7. Make a Kite
Kite-making is one of the most beautiful STEM outdoor activities your kid can undertake. To make a kite, you shall need:
- A sheet of newspaper
- Two 1/4 inch round wooden dowels, each measuring 24 and 20 inches, respectively
- Masking tape
- Ruler/ yardstick
- Yarn and ribbons
- Little handsaw
Cut the wooden dowels to the correct sizes of 24 and 20 inches, respectively. Let the kid measure and use the ruler or the yardstick to measure. Use the handsaw and make notches on both ends of your two wooden dowels. For safety reasons, let the parent undertake this step. Lay your 24-inch dowel vertically, and from the top, measure 6 inches, and make a mark using a pencil. Place your smaller dowel at the mark above to form a T-shape. Using the string, wrap the dowels together at their meeting point.
Place your masking tape over the string to secure the dowels. Around the kite, wrap strings to ensure it goes right into the notches. The frame is now done; add your newspaper or a plastic bag. Place the frame on top of a large sheet of newspaper that you have placed on the floor. Fold the edge of the newspapers over the strings and tape them carefully. Poke holes at each kite’s top and bottom points. Using your ribbon create a tail for the kite, and then fly your kite.
6. Make Egg Parachutes
Kids are encouraged to make egg parachutes that float in air tubes or tunnels. Once created, they are tossed into the air to ensure that each parachute floats back to the ground. You shall need;
- Large and narrow bendy straws
- Plastic egg halves
- Popsicle sticks
- Wooden ice cream spoons
- Coffee filters,
- Masking tape
- Wood chopsticks
Choose the connectors you will use. Tape two matching connectors into each plastic half and add tape that crosses from inside the egg to the outside around each connector to ensure they remain in the same place. Add a tape ring to the outside of each egg to hold the crosses outside edges. Tape the connectors to the outside of a coffee filter. To play with the parachutes, you have to toss them into the air, and you can add big swings to each toss, and you shall notice that the ones with more giant large straws will catch a lot of air. JDaniel14’s Mon can give your kid a diagrammatic representation of the egg parachutes.
5. Help Kids Plant Flower Garden
Kids are great admirers of nature, and flowers are a big deal for kids. They help in creating a direct connection between the kid and the environment. The procedure is straightforward and requires parental guidance due to some tools the kid is supposed to use. The kid must identify the flowers they need to plant depending on their living areas. They can purchase them from a flower shop or place them in flower seed jars.
Choose a location. Where does the kid want the flower to be?? It should be at a place where they can reach it easily. Let the kid choose the floor and size. Remove any weeds from the flower garden. The process includes but is not limited to grass, bush logs, and any other material that can interfere with the growth of the flowers. The kid must undertake soil preparation with parental guidance. Where soil is not loose, the parent can till for the kid. Flower planting. Follow the manual given by the flower supplier and plant them. Now it is left to your kid to keep the flowers watered; they can seek parental/teacher guidance to harvest them when they mature.
4. Make Egg Geodes
Making egg geodes helps kids to develop skills in following scientific steps. The kid should know that the process will take about two to three days. To undertake this activity, you shall need:
- Rock salt
- Food coloring
- Mini-muffin pan
- Substances that can be tested for crystallization include Epsom salts, sugar, baking soda, alum, and cream of tartar.
Note: alum and borax are not food products, and when being used by children, they should be closely monitored.
The process involves the following steps:
Heat a pot of water and then pour half of it into a mug. Then add a quarter cup of kosher salt into the mug and mix until they dissolve. Move to the next mug, and add a half cup of water and a quarter cup of seawater. You should notice that they dissolve quickly into each other. In the third mug, put half a cup of hot water and a quarter cup of borax and let them dissolve. Add a food color drop to each cup and make their chart for tracing purposes. Pour the liquid into the eggs which you have already broken. Wait for the liquids you poured into the eggs to evaporate for five days. Each egg shell will be left with a specific color that is very beautiful.
3. The Seed Germination Experiment
Has your kid ever asked where do trees come from? Instead of explaining that they come from seeds, we shall guide you and your kid on how to grow weed. You shall need:
- Paper towels
- Seeds, preferably a pea or beans
- Large jar-a clear one
Set up instructions
Fill your jar with paper towels. Let the kid fold them and put them at the bottom of the jar using their hands. Carefully add water to the seed jar to wet the paper towels and ensure they do not flood it. Slowly put the seeds on the paper towels and at the edge of the jar where your kid can see them and ensure they are firmly held. Now the remaining part involves placing the jar at a place where the kid can reach it and letting them make observations from day to day until the seed fully germinates. If possible, let them take measurements without touching the jar. To make the experiment more entertaining, you can plant different seeds so they can also compare how different seeds grow.
2. Undertake a Flower Color Changing Experiment
Have you wondered why flowers change colors? Then you can get your kid, aged 3-9 years, to engage in this activity, and you learn together. The most used flower in this experiment is the white rose. The kid shall need the following:
- Food color in liquid form, or if you have it in fine form, add water to make it fluid.
- Glass bottle/glass of water
- The white roses
Steps to Follow
Choose a glass container, bottle, or test tube. Add a few drops of the food color that the kids prefer using your droppers. Ask your kid to add water to the glass/tube with the food colors until the glass is almost full. Cut the stem of the rose flower with a sharp knife. The cut must be done across the flower to ensure that the flower is exposed to absorb the maximum amount of food color. Note that this step involves using a sharp knife and should not be left to the kid; it requires parental guidance. Let the kid carefully put the flower pieces into the food color and wait for several hours. The flowers will have absorbed the color. Let the flowers stay overnight; your kid will wake up to the greatest wonder in the morning.
1. Make a Paper Dart Airplane
Paper planes are a great deal in adding fun to your kid’s day. They are appropriate for beginners or kids at the intermediate level. Making a paper plane only requires simple materials, which include:
- A paper
- A pair of scissors
- A ruler
- Several double stick tape
The dart is the basic form of the paper airplane, and you use the following steps to make it. Take note of the dart and other paper airplanes; the stealth, the bumble, the hunter, and the Bullnose. To achieve the best results, use a flat thin-edger ruler and make good creases on their edges.
Fold at the center vertically. Unfold your paper and then fold every top of the corners into the mental line. Each top edge is then folded into the center line. Fold your plane in half, facing you, then the wings are folded down. Make sure that both the top and bottom edges of the body match. Inside the body, add double stick tape, and your plane will now be ready. HGTV gives a detailed account of the diagrammatic representation of the procedure as well as how to make the other types of paper airplanes.
Now you know the ten awesome spring STEM activities in which your kid can get involved. Help the kid to play as they continue to grow their learning skills. They also make the kids appreciate the world in a better way as they learn how to use locally available materials to play.