As an assistant director for an after school childcare program I believe that both teaching and exposing children to various activities and educational topics is very important for their overall development. (Especially in areas such as math and science because these two topics are often disliked for being too hard or not interesting.)Teaching science and math in a fun, hands- on way to children at a young age can make a huge difference in how receptive they will be in the future when learning about these topics.
During homework and reading hours I notice that the children who are the first born generation of Americans in their family often struggle with math and science, this maybe because their parents have not had the opportunity to master these skills in their native country and passing down their knowledge through activities at home or using resources available is difficult in a foreign land. I can relate to those children because I also struggled with liking and understanding math and science as a child. My parents being immigrants to the U.S. from Ethiopia were not familiar with educational resources that could enhance the liking of science and math for my siblings and me. Although my parents tried their best to be active in our education it was often difficult for them while creating a new home, finding a job, and learning English as these things were essential for our stable adjustment to the U.S.
My siblings and I did not go to” fun educational” places such as the zoo, pacific science center, and The Children’s Museum outside of school with our family. Being exposed to various educational topics unfortunately was mainly done within the school walls. My siblings and I were very fortunate to at least be exposed to a fun learning environment with school fieldtrips and that is why I believe that creating a strong partnership between schools and families is very important.( Especially to make parents aware of how many resources there are available regardless of the financial cost.) Afterschool programs, fieldtrips and summer camps of various topics are very important for all children and are a great way for children to learn outside the classroom.
At the community center I work for the counselors and I incorporate science and math activities such as creating exploding Volcanoes, doing cooking projects to explain the chemistry between ingredients to create such amazing taste of the food and many other activities. (We used materials such as clay, food coloring, and baking soda, dish washing soap and vinegar to explain the reaction between baking soda and vinegar when making our exploding volcanoes.) Exposing children to fun ways of learning in any topic: math, science, English (reading/writing), I believe will defiantly influence their attitude in the future towards learning about these topics in school. So why not make it interesting/fun and provide more resources for all families!