How to Get Your Child Interested in Science?
- Jan 25, 2015
“Why is the sky blue, father?” asked four-year-old Firoz yesterday. A few days ago, he was fascinated when he noticed some insects hovering around the flowers in their garden. And he had questioned his father about why were insects attracted to flowers! Curiosity is a common element that’s present amongst most kids. And it is this eagerness to know ‘why’, ‘how’ and ‘what’, ‘when’ and ‘where’ that prompts children to question their parents.
A majority of these curious kids are known to have a flair for Science. However, some kids display their knack for Science not until they are slightly older, say about eight or nine years of age. But, what about the kids who are yet to develop a natural eagerness to know more? And explore the logic behind daily Science facts?
When I say that, I don’t mean that every child must develop a scientific temper since a tender age, and grow up to become scientists. That’s not possible. But, a basic level of science education is essential for children. It enables them to obtain clearer concepts about several things and helps them get ready for studying Science in schools. Let us take a look at how parents can get their children interested in this subject:
- Trigger curiosity in kids: First of all, instill curiosity in the minds of your kids. Gift them crib toys that they can touch and move, so that they are interested to know more about things around them. Find fun things at home that can motivate your kid to know simple scientific facts. Why not take your toddler to your garden, nearby park or lake? Let them notice flowers, trees, butterflies, or the fishes in the lake. When putting water to freeze in the refrigerator, explain kids how water solidifies into ice-cubes at low temperatures.
- Share your kid’s enthusiasm: As your child starts developing a passion for Science gradually, share their enthusiasm. Some kids are drawn to fishes and other aquatic organisms. You can keep an aquarium in your house to encourage your child to know about fishes and their characteristics. Help your kids identify the names of the fishes in the aquarium and memorize the ones you indicate for them. Tell you kid to observe the feeding habits of fishes as you put earthworms and dry food for the fishes into the aquarium. It would retain his interest for fishes.
- Make appropriate connections: Seize every opportunity to teach Science to your kids. For kids can learn more from practical applications of Science rather than from books. If your kids love gardening, let them water your plants. While they do so, ask them to notice how the soil absorbs the water that’s poured into the pots. Ask them to observe the growth of their favorite plants in your verandah. If your child likes playing with magnets, collect different types of magnets. Then, show your kid how they attract iron objects like safety pins, screws, etc.
- Buy proper books: I know books might be a bit boring for young children. However, if they are age-appropriate, kids would love learning Science from their chapters. Choose books that are entertaining enough for kids and contain a lot of pictures, charts, interesting and real photographs as well as simple language. Now, purchasing many books can be expensive for some of you. You can also borrow some relevant Science books from your nearest library. Always go for books with a recent date of copyright that has the latest scientific discoveries.
- Discuss with kids: It is a great idea to bring Science into everyday conversations. Discuss about a particular simple Science experiment your kid conducted the day before, as you have your dinner together. It helps your child grow strong foundation in the topic about which they are learning. Some children like to observe the different phases of the moon. They become excited to see a brighter moon during certain nights. So, sit with your kids and explain them in layman’s terms, why the moon appears fuller on certain days and crescent-shaped on other days.
- Use media to teach: Media is an excellent teacher in more ways than one, and quite an interesting one as well. When you read the newspaper, seek any exciting news related to Science, be it astronomy or Biology. Cut out that portion of the news and paste it in your diary. Then, point it out to your kids, especially if it is within the interest areas of your child. Children take pleasure in learning about things they admire. Moreover, if they notice you sharing their science interests, it would be an added motivation for them.
- Take part in learning activities: Children love outdoor Science activities and events. As parents, you must take advantage of that. Visit planetariums, museums, zoo and science centers with your children. Once they are in such surroundings, they might bombard you with various kinds of questions. Try to be patient and answer all their questions, explaining their concepts clearly with examples. This way they can learn more easily and effectively. What’s more, they would even retain the information in their brains. Much more than what they could do with books and lessons taught in schools.
With a little effort from the end of parents, kids can learn the basic concepts of Science in a simpler way. An optimistic attitude, loads of patience and a knack for Science can really enable your kid to make progress in this smart subject. If kids develop an interest in this subject from a young age, it would reflect in their grades. Not only that. They would also grow up to be rational human beings, rather than believe in superstitions like our grandparents did.
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