You probably already know that “STEM” is an acronym for science, technology, engineering, and math (sometimes, "A" is added for art, which makes this acronym STEAM). Today, STEAM careers are in demand, and the skills needed for them — like problem solving and critical thinking — are also important for thriving in everyday life.
Here’s where literacy comes into that equation: When kids are learning how to build something, conduct a science experiment, or code a computer program, strong reading skills help them process and interpret text so they can better follow instructions and understand what to do.
Sometimes words in STEAM topics are new and complex (think “marsupial,” “artery,” or “friction”), and literacy skills help kids decode and learn these words more quickly. A children’s dictionary will help along the way! As a result, they’ll be able to better apply new knowledge to action when tackling a project.
What’s more, if you have a reluctant reader on your hands, books about STEAM topics they’re interested in like robots, birds, or space may help pique their interest in reading.
Ask your child questions like “Based on this page in the book, what do you think will happen in the science experiment?” and “Based on the title of this painting, what do you think is happening in it?” to help them understand how to identify and name what’s important about what they observe. That’s a skill needed for reading comprehension, but it also promotes creativity and critical thinking.
It is particularly helpful to combine reading with STEAM activities. Klutz activity kits are the best resources for this because they include a book designed to boost literacy skills — plus a STEAM activity that will engage your kid all afternoon (if not longer!).
Shop the Klutz kits below to support your child’s reading and STEAM skills! You can find all Klutz activity kits at The Scholastic Store.
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