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STEM -- Fun Projects for 3rd & 4th Graders Over the Summer!

Who says learning Math and Science cannot be fun? This summer, introduce 3rd to 4th graders to the excitement and intrigue of STEM projects. The Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics program introduces new concepts and activities to children that prove stimulating and truly engaging. Learn how parents or caregivers can participate in elementary grade STEM activities for kids.
Keeping your 8 or 9-year-old occupied and entertained when it comes to Mathematics and Science can be hard through standard curricula. Rather than leaving children indoors before the TV or gaming station over the summer holiday, why not make it a learning experience with simple, affordable and a new approach to teaching Science, Technology, Engineering and Math?

The STEM projects introduced for the home offer an innovative take on education when numbers, chemical combinations and structures are concerned. To keep the minds of 3rd to 4th graders active, it needs to be engaged in a different approach whether in the classroom or at home. Students introduced to the concept of STEM have shown much promise and interest compared to standard projects and programs. This is owed to the interactive manner in which these concepts are taught allowing children to visualize the formulas and techniques rather than learning it parrot-style on paper or mobile devices.
When STEM is introduced at the elementary stage, educators have found that learners show more interest in pursuing Math and Science later on. To reap the rewards of STEM learning outcomes, it must be introduced early.

Owning to the diversity of topics and integrated lessons STEM introduces, it can overlap between subjects. The greatest challenge in structured academics is providing students with engaging and exciting learning materials to apply the new concepts taught in the classroom. STEM provides this opportunity through problem solving activities, group work and a truly fun way to understand Math, Science, Technology and Engineering.
We provide a breakdown of a few simple activities you can do with young ones in the 3rd to 4th grade.

An exciting project to perform with your children is the creation of their very own lava lamp! You will need: 

Cooking Oil
A Color Dye (simple food coloring will do)
Clear Plastic bottle and Top
Seltzer Tablets
How to Create Your Lava Lamp
*Fill the bottle half with water and combined cooking/vegetable oil.
*Add the color and wait till it settles
*To see the lamp in action, simply drop the Alka Seltzer tablet into the bottle and watch the color particles dance around.
Color Dispersion with Milk
This activity is so simple you could grab items from the pantry!
You Need
Dish washing liquid
Food coloring (different colors)

How to Create a Rainbow of Colors

*Pour 300ml of milk into a shallow dish
*Add a few drops of food coloring
*Add the dishwashing liquid and watch the colors disperse
The project educates learners on the dispersion of liquids and the difference between soluble and non-soluble solutions.
STEM introduces fun concepts to teach elementary students how to incorporate the principles of the Sciences and Math with Engineering and Technology. It is a simple way to engage with children and integrate the educational aspects of academics in a visually appealing and an interactive manner.

The Importance of Routines in the Classroom

Give your students something to look forward to and the discipline to follow through.
Morning routines help get the day started out right. Students ease into projects because they’ve had time to fire up their brains, hold discussions about their discoveries, and prepare for harder tasks and projects that require greater involvement. How you choose to approach mornings in the classroom could very well set the tone for the learning environment you teach in.

Here are some of the things that are achieved through dedicated morning routines.
Students see value in familiarity.
Established morning routines save time and valuable resources. They give students a set of expectations to follow. Morning routines are initiated without much thought or persuasion, too. You don’t have to coax students into getting busy because they are already familiar with what to do and how to do it.
Procrastination goes by the wayside because students know what it takes to get started.
Even when new lessons are introduced, your class know who they’ve been partnered up with. They know where to find their supplies. They’re acquainted with how much time they must complete certain tasks. There isn’t a lot of wasted time first thing in the morning because your students are procrastinating completing tasks or projects.
Your class is taken care of while you are away.
In the event of your absence, you have fewer things to worry about. Your substitute can take advantage of the Morning Work book you’ve left for him or her to view. Your students are prepared because they’re doing similar work throughout the rest of the year, so they’re ready to help the sub as much as they can.

Your classroom benefits tremendously when following a morning routine. It prepares students for the day ahead of them especially in the event of your absence. It gives them time to mentally prepare for other subjects, projects, and tasks with greater ease. It also requires discipline because follow-through is required to complete the routine and move onto the next area of focus for the day.