As a society our goal is to bring more engineering and technology education into the Northern Region. However, it’s critically important that parents initiate and engage their children into conversations that help them examine the diversity of options that are available within science, math and technology at a young age.
- over 70% of top jobs need STEM experience, yet fewer than half of Canadian high school students graduate with senior math and science
- only 22% of parents discuss math and science with their children despite realizing that these subjects are FAR more important now than when they were in school
It’s also important to note, that with the way the world is currently growing, that STEM learning also builds skills and competencies that are needed for all jobs – things like information management, critical thinking, problem solving, positive risk taking, effective communication and more.
So how do you launch the conversation with your kids?
You need to start with what your child is personally interested in first. For example, finding how science or math complements your child’s personal interests.
Do they love to ski? The science behind how the skis are made to make them travel faster. The biology of what the body needs to train as an athlete.
Tips for Parents:
- Although teachers try their best, don’t assume your child receives adequate career advice at school. Parents are the most important influencer (especially at the younger stages). You are able to spark their interests and do the “fun” work of hoping onto google or taking them to the library to research things they are interested in.
- When it comes time for them to talk about courses (or post secondary education), you can direct them to people within the community that might be doing the type of work they think they are interested in pursuing later on.
- Being proactive around by noticing that if your child is having difficulty in math, science and technology, that there are tutors or peer mentors or extra help from the teacher that can be used.
- Even with extra effort, when your child sees themselves as successful, they are more likely to pursue it.
- At the same time, for children that excel in the STEM courses, you want to make sure they are not bored in class. You want to find them enrichment opportunities to keep them engaged and inspired.