Kids who don't have educationally rich summers will be nearly three years behind their peers by the time they reach the end of the fifth grade… Much like we would expect an athlete or a musician's performance to suffer if they didn't practice regularly, the same thing is true for young people when it comes to reading performance." -Ron Fairchild, Founding CEO, National Summer Learning Association
Beat the summer slope by adding STEMtastic activities into your child’s day.
For many parents, finding quality options to engage young minds can be a struggle. In a world where it's far too easy to offer a tablet, phone, or Netflix as a time filler, we undervalue the number of opportunities we forfeit to fill those spaces with higher order thinking and cognitive processes stimulators.
That last statement is probably why more parents are opting for Netflix. What even is a cognitive processes stimulator and who has time to figure that out? Don't stress- that's why you have us, Natural Genius STEM Solutions. We offer resources to parents to let them know that they don’t have to be an expert to help their student achieve. Our platform provides priceless tools & advice to help parents establish themselves as an advocate for their student’s success. And we answer questions like, "What even is a cognitive processes stimulator?"
To set the stage, a cognitive processes stimulator refers to any tool, activity, or technique that is designed to enhance or stimulate cognitive processes in the brain. Cognitive processes are the mental activities involved in acquiring, processing, storing, and using information. Some common cognitive processes include attention, memory, perception, problem-solving, reasoning, and decision-making. A cognitive processes stimulator can take various forms, such as:
· Brain-training games and puzzles
· Learning new skills or languages
· Physical exercise
· Meditation and mindfulness
We provided the list above but all that really translates to is:
The summer slope is a term educators use to describe learning loss during summer months. When we opt for tablets, phones, and Netflix, as opposed to filling those opportunities with higher order thinking and cognitive processes stimulators, we are contributing to learning loss. We can mitigate that loss by encouraging activities that promote learning. In other words- STEM, STEM, STEM, STEM!
"How do I Add a Splash of STEM into My Little Genius's Day?"
At Natural Genius STEM solutions, we have a vested interest in the education of children and a genuine love for STEM. We are very passionate about what we do. We have curated tips that are sure to create pathways for early learners to excel in the field of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. These tips are sure to make waves of fun along the way! Are you ready? Water you waiting for? Follow these tips to make a SPLASH💦 with STEM this summer!
Beach Walks & Journaling
Nature provides a vast backdrop for you to explore STEM topics with learners of any level. If you have access to a local beach, take advantage of the opportunity to engage in marine science smalltalk. Walking short distances, making observations, and recording your findings, combines physical activity and encourages inquiry-based learning and reasoning. This is an awesome introduction to the scientific method:
1. State the problem.
2. Form a hypothesis.
3. Test the hypothesis
4. Record data and observations
5. Draw conclusions.
6. Share your findings.
No beach? No worries! Local rivers, lakes and parks; even a walk through your neighborhood sets the stage for observations and inquiry-based expeditions.
Summer STEM Reads
Natural Genius STEM Solutions strongly supports cross-curricular literacy, especially across all STEM disciplines. Technical reading and writing, identifying the main idea, and analyzing the text, are critical skill sets to master when developing proficiency in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. When STEM literature is combined with creativity and imagination, it creates a wonderful tool to cultivate a love of STEM in students of all ages.
Summer vacay is here! For many learners this may mean a loss in literacy & STEM exposure. A routine of STEM centered literature during the summer months will avert both situations. Lay the foundation for analytical thinking skills, problem solving, design and creativity, with STEM vocabulary-building books.
Whether at circle time during early learning curriculum or via integrated ELA content, literacy is a pathway for initial STEM exposure as well as method to sustain interest through secondary education. Exposure through literacy for the win! When STEM literature is combined with creativity and imagination, it creates a wonderful tool to cultivate a love of STEM in students of all ages. Visit naturalgeniusstem.com for a list of suggested reading.
Museums play a crucial role in promoting STEM interest in early learners by providing interactive and engaging experiences. Through hands on activities, invigorating demonstrations, workshops and classes, STEM themed exhibits, and curated events, museums offer priceless introductions to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
According to Tronviggroup.com, “Black and African Americans make up 13% of the national population but account for only 3% of museum attendees.” Many museums have recognized the need for increased outreach efforts to engage underserved communities, including African American children. This can involve offering free or reduced-price admission, partnering with community organizations, and developing educational programs specifically tailored to these communities. Check your local museum for offerings & exhibits this summer.
Kitchen Chemistry is a term used to describe engaging, hands on activities that you can do with your Little Genius at home. After a day of exploring outside, gentle, yet captivating experiments can take place safely in the comfort of your home. Visit naturalgeniusstem.com for a list of experiments that will allow you to dive deep into the pool of scientific discovery!
We hope these tips serve to be beneficial to you and your Little Genius. Remember to encourage higher order thinking and cognitive processes stimulators through STEM learning opportunities at home to avoid the summer slope. Natural Genius STEM Solutions is available for STEM Breaks, tutoring and consulting! Visit us on Facebook and Instagram.. Be sure to DM your questions and register on our site for more tips on making this a ✨STEMtastic✨ summer for your genius! Try these tips and share your experiences on our site.