To help parents inspire their kids and engage them in STEM skills these holidays in a fun way, Samsung has worked with Questacon – The National Science and Technology Centre – and influential Aussie STEM Creators to compile a list of tips and activities.
Use your mobile phone to create a stop motion video. Download a stop motion app onto your phone and collect bits and pieces you find around the house to be your movie stars. You can use Lego figurines, toys, plasticine, blocks- almost anything- to create an amazing film just by moving a little bit at a time.
Take over your house with a giant Rube Goldberg machine, making one thing happen after another. Use a falling book to knock a ball to flip a bowl to land in a bucket to… the options are endless!
Consider new uses for materials you’ve got lying around the house e.g. recycled containers, toilet rolls, tissue boxes, even used Christmas wrapping paper! These can make fantastic building materials for creating all sorts of prototypes to solve any of the everyday problems you might encounter.
Do you have any old battery operated toys that you no longer use? Discover what makes them move, squeak or flash by carefully taking them apart. Use screwdrivers, scissors and other tools to expose the inner mechanisms. You could try and recreate a new toy from the original or hack two together!
While at the beach, the pool, or in the bath, have some fun with water. What objects float? What objects sink? Can you create a neutrally buoyant object- something that doesn’t float or sink, but just hovers in the middle of the water?
Try growing your veggie offcuts or using seeds from fruits. Place your offcuts or seeds in a shallow dish of water. When they start to sprout you can plant them and try to grow your own food. Make sure to keep watering them out in the garden.
Become a wildlife adventurer in your own backyard. Download the app “Questagame” onto your mobile phone and use it to map animals and insects you spot outdoors in your own neighbourhood. Sightings in the app contribute to real scientific research and conservation.
Move from the TV and find some exciting STEM YouTubers to explore like Veritasium, Brain Craft, Simone Giertz, ASAP Science, Questacon, Academy of Science and more! There are heaps of fun and interesting STEM videos online.
Don’t forget to check out what’s on offer in your local area. STEM activities can often be found at your local science centre, museum, library, national park or botanic gardens.