Families play an essential role in raising awareness of the value of science and STEM as they can encourage participation in activities that build interest and skills in science. The research has supported this idea for over 20 years. The report A New Wave of Evidence: The Impact of School, Family, and Community Connections on Student Achievement states, “…when families of all backgrounds are engaged in their children’s learning, their children tend to do better in school, stay in school longer, and pursue higher education.”
Schools can host events like science fairs and science/STEM nights that encourage families to participate in science learning. There are organizations in some communities that will introduce professionals in fields relating to science and STEM with students from their local high schools and even allow the students to shadow them for a day. In addition, some organizations host career fairs or special events where families can bring their children to meet scientists and trades folk and learn about their careers. Local colleges, museums, and libraries will put on events that bring families together to connect with science and STEM topics. Schools could even send home science or STEM kits that encourage families to participate in science learning together.
Here are a few of our favorite products to support families nurturing science learning at home.
There are many ways families can be involved and engaged in science learning. When schools create a partnership with families, they can help cultivate the necessary skills in our youth to become scientifically literate and informed citizens, leading them to choose a career path in science and STEM.