Teaching stem in the early years of preschool education
Much has been written about how important it is to provide children with a conducive environment for learning. In India, the Gurukool system in the days of yore provided that environment. However, sadly, it was slowly cast away and the physical classrooms paved the way for a delivery of education that is now being questioned for its efficacy and utility. Today Stem Preschool education in India is becoming popular even as people are recognizing the benefits of interactive as well as engaging teaching curriculum for their children.
Academic learning has had its pitfalls
The colonial education system had its merits and has served its time. It has produced many eminent scholars and professionals who have gone on to make a name for themselves in the real world. However, over the last decade or so, the limitations of this system of education have been are being exposed more than ever before. Children are learning subjects out of compulsion and not out of interest. University admissions and those to professional institutions are being accorded based on how much the student can reproduce by way of memory onto the answer sheet. There is scant regard for his or her understanding of the subject.
The result is that the beauty and enjoyment of learning the subject for its intrinsic utility as well as application to everyday life has been lost. Children are unable to apply what they learnt in the subjects of math, science to daily life. This has led to school and preschool dropouts by children. It has also led to students finishing University education but lacking the ability to find employment as they cannot communicate properly, has not understood basics of the subjects they learnt during their school and college.
The introduction of stem lesson plans for preschools in India is a blessing – Teaching stem in the early years
Given the above background, there is need to revamp the education system and this has to be done at the grassroots or preschool level itself. This is the level at which children get their first exposure to schooling and a system of education that they should be enjoying. The current system has not made studies an enjoyable or enriching experience.
The governments through its initiatives of laying down strict rules on how preschools have to be run have set the ball rolling with regard to basics. Now the next step is to introduce a system of education that develops the creative abilities of the children. Parents and teachers too have to play their roles and they have to be facilitated in doing so through a system that is not a burden on them.
Stem education in Indian school is here to stay
The word STEM is the acronym for subjects science, technology, engineering and math. We are in times when children are getting exposed to the outside world through the prisms of television, computers and internet. We cannot afford to continue with outdated systems of educating them.
Stem education in preschools impart a methodology for the rapid development of the children. They begin to learn new skills for the overall achievement of milestones in their physical, social-emotional and intellectual domains.
The preschool stem kits in India enable children to explore, observe things, ask questions out of curiosity and thus learn at a pace that is convenient for them. Education is thus not thrust upon them. The subjects of science, technology, engineering and math are introduced and integrated into daily learning in a manner that is seamless. Children do not get overawed by these subjects later on in life as they have already experienced how these subjects have helped them learn critical concepts.
Steam activities for preschoolers – Preschool stem activities promote intellectual learning
Children when put through the concepts of studies through intellectual learning, attend school more regularly. As opposed to academic learning that depends on memorizing, reciting and counting concepts, intellectual learning promotes reasoning, problem solving and hypothesizing.
Learning thus takes place through the process of natural interaction and with real stuff within the environment of the child. This is learning that is more in sync with the ability of the child.
In India, Theokids.in offers development of stem learning integrated preschool curriculum for early year education.