Guest Post: Science Sparks on Miniland.
This months guest post from a well known blogger comes from Emma at Science Sparks. She runs the site with Kerry & their website is a fantastic resource for parents who want to give their children a confidence and ease with science from an early age.
At Science Sparks we are passionate about getting children interested in science from an early age, and showing parents that science doesn’t have to be boring or complicated, but can be fun, exciting and simple. Most of the investigations on our site can be done using ingredients from your kitchen cupboard or basic craft supplies.
From a personal point of view with my own children, who are all under 6, I try nurture an interest in the world around us and get them to question what they see and hear. If we see a prickly plant we talk about why it might have prickles or if we see a pretty flower, why insects might be attracted to it. I want my children to grow up curious and knowledgeable about their surroundings.
My favourite posts on Science Sparks are the simplest, like when we made a giant toy filter or when we tried to waterproof a chicken. The investigations my children enjoy the most are the ones they can be very involved with. They liked watching the rocket and the lava lamp, but there’s nothing better than getting them actually doing the science with me.
We’ve used some science kits, which we think are great especially if you take the investigation a step further. For example, if you used the Bug Observatory to look at bugs you could then talk about why we need different types of insects, without spiders we would soon be overrun by flies and we need worms to help breakdown organic waste.
If you manage to grow crystals with a crystal kit, you could then try to grown your own using sugar and maybe even make a lollypop.
If you build one of the skeleton kits, you could go on talk about different kinds of joints, or how the spine can bend. The possibilities really are endless.
I tried out the electric circuit kit with my 5 year old, although he is a little young for this particular kit we thought the it was great quality and very easy to put together. He was soon able to understand what a circuit was, and how electricity flows around. We likened the electricity to being like cars on a road and switches being like obstacles in the road that the electricity couldn’t get past. I do like that even with a kit aimed at an older child you can simplify the science to match the age.
I’ve actually been quite excited looking at all the Miniland Educational kits, I’ve seen so many that I know my children would love, and I know each would give us inspiration for further investigations afterwards.
Miniland can be purchased from a number of online stores.