Educational leaders, policy makers and politicians are all in agreement that STEM, or Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, education is crucial to the future of our country and world. Innovation is what keeps us competitive globally but perhaps more importantly, provides new discoveries in the areas of environmental and conservation sciences to create a more sustainable way of life. This all sounds beyond the scope of preschool; but is it? Quality early education experiences are the building blocks of our future success. So what does STEM education look like in preschool?
According to the Hands On Science Partnership which is affiliated with the STEM Education Coalition, “…the most important component of STEM is to ‘learn by doing’.” This, of course, is how preschoolers learn everything about their world. At Nature Center Preschool, we provide young children with tools, experiences, and teacher interactions that promote hands-on inquiry based learning and it all begins with what Naturalist Rachel Carson called ‘a sense of wonder’.
“If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder… he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.”– Rachel Carson