11 tips to parents on how to support children in science education

It’s hard to argue that science isn’t important. It helps us to understand life on Earth. It helps us advance technology and improve medical treatment. And with the rapidly growing global population and increase in global warming, it may be the thing that helps save the human race. So scientific knowledge will undoubtedly be an asset to our kids as they grow up. But how can you tell if your child is scientifically minded? Well, it’s impossible if they aren’t exposed to science… And there’s not one way of thinking that suits science. People think of scientists as only thinking in logical ways, but some of the greatest discoveries, such as the internet, have come from thinking in imaginative and unorthodox manners. So the first step in encouraging the development of a scientific mind is to expose it to science. You could enrol them in a science camp in Singapore, take them on a trip to Singapore Science Centre, or get them a subscription to a science magazine for kids, such as Whizz Pop Bang.

There are many reasons why kids should attend a science camp, such as their positive impacts on logical thinking and problem solving. But there are also many ways that you can support your child’s science learning at home:

1.Be patient

It can be difficult for kids to understand some key concepts of science so be patient and help them to gain confidence in their knowledge. Once they have these foundations they can quickly build on them.

2.Encourage observation

Science is everywhere, from the water rising in the bath when you sit in it, to the bread rising in the oven when it’s baked, so encourage them to observe and record what’s happening around them.

3.Encourage them by asking ‘why?’

Make sure that kids know that it’s OK to ask questions. Try to answer them as best as you can, even if the answers sound ‘messy’. And if you don’t know the answer, explain that it’s the perfect opportunity for you to research and understand it together. Or, even better, for them to research it and explain it to you!

4.Science is cumulative

A basic understanding of science is a foundation for learning across many subjects. Celebrate each milestone in your child’s learning and encourage them to build on it.

5.Encourage their interests

If they have a specific interest, help them explore it. So if they’re into space exploration why not book a trip to a space museum?

6.Invest in equipment

Most science doesn’t need much equipment, but some can encourage learning. For example you could consider buying a ‘jeweller’s loupe’, a small hand-held magnifying glass that retracts into its case, so that they can explore the miniature world around them, including flowers and insects.

7.Encourage the process of learning by making mistakes

Penicillin, cornflakes and plastic all originated from mistakes, so we should celebrate mistakes as steps on the journey to success. If kids are making mistakes they’re likely to be trying new things, pushing themselves and most importantly, learning by doing something.

8.Learn with them

See everything as a learning opportunity. A walk in the park is an opportunity to observe how ants follow trails. Even watching TV can help improve scientific knowledge if you’re watching programmes made by educators such as David Attenborough.

9.Encourage experimentation

Whether it’s mixing paints or cooking eggs, there are countless opportunities to encourage kids to experiment. Ask them what they think the result will be and then see what really happens. It might even make them more adventurous eaters!

10.Encourage appropriate use of technology

No one wants their kids to spend too much time on screens but the internet can be a great source of information and there are plenty of educational websites that.

11.Encourage getting messy

Good science camps for kids will involve plenty of hands-on activities, and experiential activities are also important for science learning at home. There will often be cleaning up to do afterwards but it’s always worth it!

So, when you’re deciding how to choose a holiday camp for your child, make sure that you give science the consideration it deserves.

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