Do you know why you can’t trust atoms? It’s because they make up everything!
*Pause for laughter*
While our science humor might be a bit silly, one thing that isn’t is incorporating both indoor and outdoor STEM activities for toddlers into your curriculum.
There are a number of reasons you should promote STEM education among your students. First, STEM in early childhood education curriculum encourages curiosity, exploration, discovery and problem-solving, which will serve your students well throughout their schooling. Second, math and science tend to be the courses that give kids trouble later in their educational journey, so it’s important to give them a strong foundation early on.
At this age, introducing STEM projects for toddlers, as well as STEM concepts, should be a top priority. After all, your kiddos’ brains are like sponges and are primed to absorb new information. That’s why we’re sharing five of our favorite indoor and outdoor STEM activities for toddlers below.
Coke and Mentos
Volcano projects are always fun, and this is perhaps the most well-known one. If you’re not familiar with it, all you do is drop three to four candy Mentos into a plastic bottle of Coca-Cola, stand back and watch the explosion happen. It’s a simple project, and your students will be fascinated by the fizzy reaction. Also, you likely want to consider adding this to the list of outdoor STEM activities for toddlers since it can be quite messy.
Cloud in a Jar
We love this weather-themed STEM activity from Gift of Curiosity. There are two different variations, both of which require easily accessible materials. Regardless of which one you choose, this is one of our favorite STEM projects for toddlers since it demonstrates how clouds are formed.
Coding a LEGO Maze
In this activity from ResearchParent, children learn the basics of coding, a skill that is becoming more in-demand every passing day. This exercise is super easy to prepare and only requires a printable, which can be found at the link above, as well as LEGO or DUPLO blocks.
Pipe Cleaner Counting
Here’s a super easy and fun activity from Laughing Kids Learn that will help teach your kiddos counting and ordering. As a bonus, it also helps with motor skill development. Here’s the gist: children add beads to pipe cleaners then count. It’s that easy! And while this might seem simple, it’s a great activity to help your students develop their numeracy skills.
Building with Marshmallows (or Jelly Beans)
Last but not least, is one of the most popular engineering exercises for kids. Here, you simply give kids toothpicks and marshmallows (or jelly beans), and let them build structures. Lemon Lime Adventures perfectly describes how to conduct this classic engineering stem projects for toddlers as well as older age groups. One note, since you are dealing with toddlers, you want to pay close attention since toothpicks are sharp. We also prefer marshmallows instead of jelly beans since they are larger and easier to insert the toothpicks.
Are you ready to incorporate these indoor and outdoor stem activities for toddlers into your curriculum? If so, ChildCare Education Institute has you covered with a number of courses.
For starters, check out STEM in Early Childhood Education. This two-hour beginner level course covers basic info about STEM education so you have a foundation and can promote the development of science and math skills in young children.
We also offer STEAM: Enhancing STEM Education with the Arts, another two-hour beginner level course. This one offers tools and insights necessary to enhance STEM related learning outcomes through the integration of a wide variety of art activities.
So what are you waiting for? Click HERE to learn more about these offerings, as well as CCEI’s catalog of 150+ courses in English and Spanish that can be taken anywhere, anytime.