18 STEM Activities this Child can do with His Car:
Updated: Apr 24
Children learn best by doing - through play and exploration. It’s easy to practice STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) lessons at home with toys children already have or that can be purchased for very little at thrift store or Dollar Store. 1. Examine and describe the car to someone. How is it the same as, or different from, other cars or objects in color, shape, size, features?
2. Explain what a car is for and how he thinks it operates.
3. Discover how wheels work.
4. Find other things that have wheels. How are they different from the ones on his car?
5. Find things that are bigger or smaller than the car, by comparison.
6. Explore how the car rolls on various surfaces and textures: water, dirt, sand, metal, grass, concrete, etc.
7. Push the car and measure how far it goes. Push harder. Push softer. Change surfaces.
8. Make the car move without touching it with his hands.
9. Race the car against another object that rolls.
10. Design roads out of things like sticks & leaves, toys, or chalk. Pretend the car stops at real-life places.
11. Explore how the car rolls down a ramp, ramps constructed differently, ramps at different heights, or ramps with different surfaces. What happens when the car gets to the bottom? Will it roll up a ramp?
12. Find a way to pull the car up a ramp.
13. Make a parking lot out of a box or box top and practice parking the car in the spaces. Add numbers or colors to the spaces so he can park his car in the right spot.
14. Build a garage or bridge out of rocks, sticks, Popsicle sticks, blocks, paper, etc.
15. Design and build a car out of objects he finds. It doesn’t have to roll.
16. Search for other objects that are blue, that roll, or that go in some way. How do they work?
17. Sort his cars or other toys by their characteristics.
18. Draw his observations on paper, even if he scribbles.
Build on what children know. Begin with activities in their simplest form. Increasingly make activities more complex and challenging after children demonstrate what they learned and have mastered skills.
Talk to children about what they make and the things they do. Help them use words to describe their activities. Focus on sizes, shapes, colors, quantities, measuring, textures, and what happens when circumstances change.
· Ask questions that make young children think and want to test their ideas. Give them time to think, express their opinions, share what they know, create, and actually do an experiment.
· Ask open-ended questions that require an explanation, instead of questions that can be answered with one word like yes, no, blue, or car.
· Ask questions as if you don’t know what the children did.
Angela Russ is a mom-preneur, children’s author, interactive trainer on the subject of early childhood, and award-winning artist/producer of music for young children. She presents educational strategies to child care providers, parents, and teachers nationwide for AEYCs, R & Rs, and the like. She is a member of the Recording Academy and is the sole owner of the Russ InVision record label. For more information on Angela, her workshops and accomplishments you are welcome to visit www.abridgeclub.com. © 2017, Russ InVision. All rights reserved.
For information: Contact: Angela Russ