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There are 18 articles in this section.

IF kids code, THEN...what?

The new focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) includes efforts to get kids — even very young kids — involved in computer programming. Coding builds logical thinking and problem-solving skills. It's also creative and collaborative! Find out how you can introduce your child to the basic concepts of programming.

Science vs. Science Fiction

Science fiction is a type of fiction where the stories revolve around science and technology of the future. Science fiction texts are often set in the future, in space, in a different world, or in a different universe or dimension. As exciting as these books can be, it's useful to remind your child that while science fiction may be based loosely on scientific truth, it is still fiction.

Think Like an Inventor

Creativity is an important characteristic to foster in your child. Fostering a creative spirit will give your child experience identifying a problem and coming up with new ideas for solving them. Here are four ways to encourage creativity in your young child.

Developing Research and Information Literacy

Explore two ways you can help your child begin to develop information literacy: learning to tell the difference between fact and opinion, and figuring out if a source of information is reliable.

The Vocabulary of Science

How to Read Nonfiction Text

Many kids love to read about science and nature as well as real people, places, and events. Nonfiction books present information in engaging and interesting ways. Find out how you can help your child learn to navigate all the parts of a nonfiction book — from the table of contents to the diagrams, captions, glossary, and index.

Share What You Discover! Publishing Your Work

Almost every week there is a news story about a new finding or discovery in science. These news stories are one of the exciting steps in the science world: sharing what you find! Helping kids share their own scientific findings will make them feel like part of the scientific community.

Creating Bar Graphs

Real-life scientists use charts and graphs as a way to organize and understand the information they have gathered. Young scientists can do the same! These activities will help you and your child create simple bar charts together, learn the vocabulary of graphing (axis, scale, labels, etc.), and have fun building "on-the-ground" graphs using real objects.

Making Inferences and Drawing Conclusions

Cause and Effect

Discover some simple hands-on activities and games that can be done at home or in the backyard to help your child develop a deeper understanding of cause and effect — and strengthen reading comprehension and scientific inquiry skills.

Teaching Sequence

Helping children understand the concept of sequence develops both literacy and scientific inquiry skills. Here are a few simple activities that families can do together to give kids opportunities to observe, record, and think about sequencing.

Patterns and Categorizing

Children begin using their senses to recognize patterns and categorize things at a young age — skills that play an important role in early learning. This tip sheet provides some simple activities, as well as recommended books, that parents can use to help their kids build pattern recognition and categorization skills in science and math.

Recording Observations: Capturing and Sharing Images

Young kids love technology, gadgets, and nature! While parents may be looking for ways to reduce screen time for their kids, here are a few helpful suggestions for integrating simple technology and books into your outdoor adventures in a fun and educational way.

Recording Observations: Journals and Field Notes

Science and math explorations provide your growing reader with a chance to record all kinds of observations. Young children love to keep a special journal, and fill it with all sorts of drawings, scribbles, sketches, notes, and graphs. Try these ideas and books, in addition to adding the date to each entry, and watch as your child's observational and recording skills grow along with your child.

Measure Up!

Hands-on measurement activities are fun to explore with children. Introduce your young learner to these interesting new vocabulary words and knowledge, and help your child develop an early love of measuring everything in sight!

Making Predictions

As a young reader, your child is learning to make predictions while reading which they can use to monitor their understanding of the story while thinking ahead to the next part. Scientists, just like readers, make predictions all the time. Help your child begin to see the connection between what she does as a reader and what she can do as a scientist. Below are two simple ways you can encourage your child to put her prediction skills to work as a scientist:

STEM Tools at Home

Many of the "tools" needed for science, math, and engineering exploration are right inside your home! Here are five ideas for putting everyday tools to work for some everyday fun:

Steps in the Scientific Process

One way parents can help children become interested in science is by explaining the scientific process. The scientific process is the way scientists go about asking and answering scientific questions by making observations and doing experiments. Review the steps of the scientific process below, and learn how to incorporate your child into each one!