The Annual K-12 STEM Symposium will be held March 25, 2017, in Herndon, Virginia. Register for the free, all-day forum that equally engages local parents, educators and children at www.stemsymposium.com. Interactive exhibits included UAVs, flight simulators, smallsats/drones, physics experiments, topography models, heart monitors, 3D printers, robotics, safe cybersecurity practices, connected cars and other exhibits aimed at students in kindergarten all the way through college. The theme for this year’s K-12 STEM Symposium is “Explore Careers in STEM.”
It takes a community of teachers, mentors, parents and local educators to nurture a child’s curiosity of the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields. Linking science and mathematics taught in the classroom to impactful careers is an ongoing national challenge. The annual Symposium helps children discover new and exciting possibilities in the STEM fields within the National Capital Region. Elementary, middle and high school students learned about computer coding, space, 3D printing, drones, safe cyber practices, connected cars and healthcare innovations through a wide-range of fun and interactive exhibitors and speakers catered to students in kindergarten to college.
High school and college internship opportunities can help students better understand exciting and wide-ranging careers available to those with STEM degrees. Showcasing how elementary school computer science, high school organic chemistry and college calculus equate to careers in 3D printing, nanotechnology or aeronautics are important to cultivate future talent to the STEM fields. Summer and school-year STEM enrichment programs are a large part of a child’s interest in becoming proficient in the mathematics and sciences. Simple tools such as educational science and technology apps, family-friendly physics experiments and robotics building can also influence a child’s proficiently in the math and science.
Every parent or guardian can be a driving force in a child’s pursuit and curiosity of the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields. Whether a child is interested in computer coding or chemistry, or has yet to show an interest in STEM, parents need actionable information to spark and motivate their children. Each K-12 STEM Symposium attendee will receive online access to the only Parent-STEM Action Plan geared towards nurturing a child’s curiosity towards the STEM fields specifically in the National Capital Region. The Parent STEM Action Plan included a vetted list of year-round and summer enrichment programs, tips and tricks about from local parents about how to best introduce STEM to children and best practices from local teachers and principals on STEM activities.
Bottom Line: The opportunities for students who are STEM-proficient are endless. Connecting exciting career opportunities to math and science taught in the classroom is critical for encouraging and keeping children interested in pursuing STEM careers. Get informed. Get excited. Get started.