CWCM STEM Sprouts is growing young minds for a tech-driven future
By Taylor J. Hale
STEVENS POINT — Central Wisconsin Children’s Museum (CWCM) faculty is readying future generations for a technology-driven society with their STEM Sprouts program, initiated in April of 2017. The program engages youth with interactive science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) based activities that help develop life-skills in an enjoyable environment.
“I previously led STEM Scouts pilot programs which were developed by the Boy Scouts of America with elementary and middle school students,” explained CWCM Education Facilitator Tatiana White in an interview with the Gazette. “I realized that these lessons could be scaled down so that the lessons that I enjoyed teaching for STEM Scouts could also be taught within our museum.”
The program quickly gained public attention and was integrated into the museum’s weekly curricula. It was clear that the community was looking for a way to educate children on the complexities of STEM fields in a fun and impactful way, and CWCM staff members were thrilled to provide the academic aid.
“We believe that we must break the stigma that not everyone can do science for a new generation of children,” White said. “Science is not exclusive. It is for everyone.”
The classes, geared for children around the ages of 2-8, set attendance sizes to 10 children, to keep the sessions personal and allow for instructors to work one-on-one with each student. Each 30-minute class has a different project for the kids to work on, and themes can change drastically from week to week.
“Our activities are different each week, but some of our favorite lessons may be repeated,” White said. “We have lessons as complex as creating a lemon battery, but we also have experiments as easy as mixing bubble solutions. We plant seeds of ideas for further exploration.”
STEM Sprouts classes are held weekly at the CWCM in downtown Stevens Point on Wednesdays with two separate sessions — session one begins at 9:30 a.m., session two starts at 10:15 a.m. The program is free with museum membership or daily admission.
To find out more information on the STEM Sprouts program visit: www.cwchildrensmuseum.org.
Contact Taylor J. Hale at firstname.lastname@example.org with Portage County news and information.