FREE Shipping on all our products! Click to see details. (Yes, we are still shipping on 05/30)

0

Your Cart is Empty

3 Tips for adding coding, engineering, and robotics to your spare time {Episode 91}

April 20, 2020 5 min read

We are all finding ourselves with more time on our hands. To fill it up, listen to these three tips for adding in robotics, coding, and engineering to your day.

We are all finding ourselves with a bit more time on our hands. And over the next two episodes, I am going to share a few ideas to fill that time with a bit of science. In this episode, I am sharing three tips for adding in robotics, coding, and engineering.

Hi, I’m Paige Hudson and welcome to season 6 of the Tips for Homeschool Science Show where we are breaking down one of the lofty ideals of teaching science into three building blocks you can use in your homeschool.

Listen to this episode

Or you can find this podcast in iTunesGoogle Play, Stitcher, or Spotify.

Share the Tips

If you found these homeschool science tips to be helpful, would you please take a moment to rate it in the podcasting app you use to listen to the show? This would help me tremendously in getting the word out so that more earbuds are filled with science-teaching encouragement.

Episode 91 Transcript

We are all finding ourselves with more time on our hands. To fill it up, listen to these three tips for adding in robotics, coding, and engineering to your day.

These days, our kiddos have a bit more spare time and I wanted to share with you a few ways you can sneak in a bit of science into those moments. Especially, a bit of coding, engineering, and robotics.

The STEM fields are rapidly expanding as technology becomes a greater part of our daily lives. The great thing about coding, engineering, and robotics is that jumping in and trying things out is a fantastic way to learn about these fields.

And these days, there are so many options for introducing our kiddos to these fields because scientists know that when you introduce the concepts early and let kids play with STEM, it becomes much less scary in the later years!

With that said, the idea is that these options will be enjoyable for your kiddos, not just another box for you to check off. So, the tips that I am sharing today are things that my kiddos choose to do or things that they ask to spend more time on when I have introduced them during school time.

Let’s get onto the tips…

3 Tips for adding coding, engineering, and robotics to your spare time

We are all finding ourselves with more time on our hands. To fill it up, I am sharing three tips for adding in robotics, coding, and engineering to your day.

Tip #1 – Play computer games.

I know that we are concerned about screen time, but the fact is that there are options for spending the screen time you allow for learning. I’m not talking about those boring education games where you get rewarded for spelling a word right or for answering a math problem. Those games have their place.

What I am talking about is those games that your kids choose to play. Ones that will teach them about science without them realizing that they are doing school. Our kiddos enjoy:

  • Minecraft – Our aerospace-engineer-in-training recommends this one as she says that it really helps kids develop the spatial awareness that all engineers need. Plus, it’s fun to get the whole family involved in a building project!
  • Kerbal Space Program – This is one of our son’s favorite games, but be forewarned that this program has a bit of a learning curve. There are plenty of tutorials out there. Plus, the satisfaction my kids have gotten from having one of their creations finally fly or finally make it into space has been worth the momentary frustrations. You can also check out the other educational games on STEAM for more ideas.
  • Hour of Code and Scratch Coding from MIT – Both of these websites are great for learning to code through games. They are a bit more schoolish, but every time I get our son started, he wants to spend more time than I expect he will.

I am sure that there are more options out there, but these are a few of our favorites. If your kiddos enjoy others, head on over to this episode’s show notes to leave a comment with your suggestions. I have added links to each of our suggestions there.

If you fill that spare time playing computer games, your kiddos will learn about coding, engineering, and robotics.

Tip #2 – Read a few STEM books.

I have a lot of science books on my shelf, it’s part of what I do. But in times like these, I will strew (to borrow a term from unschooling that basically means to leave out in an obvious place) books that will encourage a bit of STEM learning.

I like to choose books that have projects in it as well so that the kids can get a bit of hands-on experience as well. Here are a few of my favorites:

If you fill your spare time with reading a few STEM books, your kiddos learn about coding, engineering, and robotics.

Tip # 3 – Let them dream up crazy projects.

I am constantly amazed at the crazy ideas our kiddos come up with. I don’t always let them run with their ideas because we don’t have the time to see them through. But now that we do, I find myself encouraging them to think through the possibilities.

In other words, when our son found an old Styrofoam plane kit and wondered if he could attach engines to make it fly, we raided our science supply cabinet to see if we could make it happen. Spoiler alert: His DC-motor powered plane flew about 5 seconds longer, but we had a whole lot of fun testing it out!

You can let your kids use things lying around the house, such as toilet paper tubes, tape, paper, etc. Or if you have the funds, I recommend the following materials to build with:

  • K’nex kits
  • LEGOS
  • Snap Circuits set

If you fill your spare time by letting your kiddos dream up crazy projects, your kiddos learn about coding, engineering, and robotics.

Wrapping it up

So use a bit of all that spare time you find yourself with to add in a bit of STEM education. You can have your kiddos play computer games, you can get a few books, and you can let them dream up crazy projects.  These three things will help you to add in a bit of coding, engineering, and robotics.

Thanks for listening and I hope you have a great week playing with science! If you have any questions or want to share some ideas you have used to add coding, engineering, and robotics, please feel free to leave a comment below.


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in {Podcast} The Tips for Homeschool Science Show

3 Tips for doing a science fair project at home during your spare time {Episode 92}

April 27, 2020 5 min read

Science fair projects take time to complete so it's a good idea to do one over a break. Click "Read More" to see three tips to help you do a science fair project at home!

3 Tips to help you enjoy reading aloud in your homeschool a whole lot more {Episode 90}

April 13, 2020 4 min read

If you have one (or more) of those wiggly children, bursting with energy, reading aloud may end up as stressful instead of soothing. Click "Read More" to get three tips to help you enjoy reading aloud in your homeschool.

3 Tips for homeschooling during a stressful season without losing your mind {Episode 89}

March 30, 2020 4 min read

How do you keep homeschooling during a stressful season? These three tips will help.

Recent events have been stressful and packed with changes. Click "Read More" to get three tips to help you keep homeschooling during a stressful season without losing your mind.

Join Us