Nov 15, 2022

Timedoor is certified and accredited by STEM.org

Timedoor is certified and accredited by STEM.org image

We are pleased to announce that Timedoor Academy & our Principal Setyo Purwaningsih for being certified and accredited by the international education organization STEM.org. Thank you to our curriculum maker, teacher, students, and all lovely member of timedoor. We aim to be better and better to provide the best IT education for the next generation and create a bright future together. Appreciate your continued support.

Keep Reading

5 Things Kids Should Learn From an Early Age
5 Things Kids Should Learn From an Early Age
Blessed with a cocktail of curiosity and rapid growth, your children’s brains are like sponges when they’re just a wee bit young – and boy do they learn things very quickly. During this period, a lot of the essential and core life skills start to develop – though they don’t become fully adept at handling most complex real-life situations until they’re well in their teenage years.    Therefore, parents and guardians must supervise, facilitate, and structure their kids’ learning journey to cultivate the foundation of their life skills development.   But what are the skills that parents need to pay attention to when they’re trying to raise their children?   Let’s get into it!   Social Skills Do you want your kids to get along with others? Cultivate their social skills!   Children with good social skills work well with their peers and are polite to their members of the community. They also tend to be good problem solvers who are also adept at conflict resolution.   Social skills can be incorporated during playtime, school hours, or at home!   Sharing is Caring Your kids copy off whatever it is the humans around them are doing. When your children are surrounded by people who demonstrate sharing and caring, they will have good role models to emulate.   The children will also need to frequently be in situations that allow them to learn about sharing through real-life practical experience. Ways to facilitate that may include:   Children learn a lot from just watching what their parents do. When you exemplify a willingness to share in your family, it gives your children a great example to follow.   Here are a few examples of how to get your children to be comfortable with sharing in the everyday situations:   - Get your children to understand why sharing is caring. Provide examples through your own actions e.g. sharing your meals with other members of the family, watching shows on a mobile gadget together – all in the spirit of making the experience “fun” for everybody. You could also verbally advise your children to share their toys with the other kids. - Praise and affirm positive sharing behavior. This makes your kids feel validated and reinforces them to repeat the act in the future. Also, just like getting your kids to understand why sharing is caring, praise and affirmation can be done not just whenever they themselves performed acts of sharing, but when other people do so as well. E.g. when their cousins share their toys with your kids, validate the act by praising the good deed. Let your children see it and hope they will want to emulate the good act. - Prepare your children before they socialize - whether it’s before school, during playground sessions, or during playdates. This preparation will help them to be mentally equipped when the situation calls for them to share, and all the practices that they’ve had at home will kick in. Health All good parents want their children to grow up healthy and happy!   While a healthy kid is always happy, a happy kid isn’t always clean. That’s okay though. There are things parents and guardians can do to ensure that they are equipped with the skills that would keep them healthy and happy for a lifetime.   Healthy Diet A healthy diet is the foundation of healthy living, but how do we inculcate the interest and habit of healthy nutrient intake in children?   Hiding vegetables in fried food does not cut it – who are we fooling here? Deep-fried food isn’t the best for health thus we’re still feeding them unhealthy morsels.   Kids become more willing and adventurous in their dietary choices when they are a part of the food-making in the kitchen. Yes. Your children will probably start eating their veggies if they see how the dish is prepared. It gives them a sense of belonging and investment.   So, whenever it’s possible, involve your children in meal preps. Get them to whisk, help marinade proteins, tear vegetables, or knead doughs – anything that would get their hands to feel the food that they’re about to eat. Remember to keep the atmosphere happy. Happy kids absorb knowledge very quickly!   Physical Exercise The best way to avoid diseases is to prevent them, and exercise is one of the best ways to do so.   Kids who are accustomed to physical activities have stronger cardiac health, sleep better, are more energetic, and are able to focus better when they’re learning.    Exercise also has a lot of psychological benefits for children. Fit kids grow up to be more confident, more assured in themselves, and more mentally resilient.   Now, how do we develop an interest in exercise in your children?   Start by making the physical sessions as fun as possible, and that does not include forcing them to do them. Use different terms for exercise so that they associate the activity with positive and fun ones. Try “play” or “game” instead of exercise when prompting your kids into exercise.   Hygiene There’s no age that’s too young to start developing good habits for hygiene. Most parents keep their kids on schedule for bath, hand washing, clothes changing, and teeth brushing without telling them explicitly the reason behind them. Being honest with your kids is probably the best way of getting them to understand why they do what they do. Communicate the reason behind each hygiene-maintaining action effectively and supervise them when they’re doing the acts. How heavy a supervision you impose on your children can vary depending on how old your kids are, but the end goal is to get them doing it even when you’re not compelling them to. Just like exercising, hygiene maintenance should always be fun for kids. Whenever possible, don’t raise your voice or do anything that would have your children assign traumas to the actions that they’re about to take. Be patient. They’re kids after all!   Emotional Skills Your children’s feelings matter.   Their ability to understand their feelings and the feelings of the humans around them are contingent on their emotional health.    Emotional Regulation Nobody just pops out of the womb being emotionally stable. Nobody.   Kids, especially younger ones can have mood swings that are very difficult to anticipate. Figuring out the triggers can also often prove to be difficult. Therefore, helping them to regulate their emotional state is one of your core duties as parents.      There are, though, some kids who are born with the natural propensity to understand how to regulate their emotions (those children will still have unreasonable tantrums though) but be discouraged not if your little ones don’t seem to be as adept as the neighbor’s children. When it comes to nature vs nurture, nurture almost always reigns supreme.   Providing your kids with a stable, loving, and fun environment to grow up in is very important. When given a conducive environment, children’s journey in learning emotional regulation will be much easier.    A Romanian orphanage was the subject of a study on the paramountcy of nurture when it comes to children’s emotional regulation. During the research, children who were randomly assigned to loving and caring foster families exhibited better emotional regulation compared to the ones who stayed in the orphanage.   Empathy This is a core skill that is seriously lacking in a lot of adults nowadays, it seems.   Empathy is the ability to feel how another human is feeling given a scenario and then positively respond with affection. This skill requires time and consistency to develop.   How do we facilitate our children’s empathy development?   Start by showing empathy with your own:   - Ask them questions that validate their feelings – for example, “Do you feel scared when I turn off the light before you sleep? It’s okay. I know it can be scary to not be able to see anything, so I will stay with you until you fall asleep!”   - Discuss with your kids the feelings of others – for example, “You know, Loni feels sad whenever you pull her hair in the playground. Hair pulling hurts Loni. It wouldn’t feel good to you if someone pulled your hair, right? So, please don’t do that when you’re playing with Loni.”   - Teach them to perform acts of empathy – for example, “Let’s buy some Christmas gifts for the kids at the orphanage! Then we get to be happy together with them, and they’ll have something nice to get through Christmas!”     Linguistics Life would be easier for your children if they are able to understand and communicate effectively with other people. Great linguistic skills can also broaden their horizons, which is important in an increasingly global society.   Effective Communication This is another core life skill that must be developed since your kids are very young.   Children who are able to convey their feelings and thoughts in society tend to do better in school and are well-liked by people. They also are more likely to establish good and healthy relationships with their peers because they are able to communicate effectively so that the others could understand their intention without misconstruing.   Listening An effective communicator is someone who listens well.   Just like all of the other skills we have mentioned before, inculcating this skill starts with the parents and guardians modeling this action in front of their children. Again, examples are the best teachers.   Whenever your kids are saying something to you, try repeating back whatever they’re saying to them to show that you comprehended whatever it was they were saying. Follow up with an open-ended question – e.g. “Did you say you had a lot of fun at James' playdate? How fun was it?”   The listening skill also teaches your kids about turn-taking during a conversation. A technique that is commonly used in therapy is to get a cushion or a plushie and have the person who has the object speak while the others listen. Then your kid needs to pass the object to another person when they’re done speaking.   Be a Great Conversationalist A great conversationalist can always get along with people that come from various backgrounds. This is an important skill when your kids grow up and are ready to network.   Instil the passion for reading and effective research to broaden your children’s knowledge, so that they’re able to relate and resonate whenever they’re involved in varying topics of conversation. Encourage them to find the humor in things, whenever appropriate. Funny people always get friends everywhere.   Foreign Languages In an increasingly global society, it is no longer an option for people to at least be bilingual – it’s a necessity.   Research encourages second language acquisition quite early in a child’s life – because it’s easier for them when their brains are still at the golden period of rapid growth. They can definitely acquire it later in life, but it’ll be much harder for them.   Now, how do we get our children to start learning a second language early in life?   One way is by assigning an adult companion to speak one language, and another adult speaking another. Your kids will associate which adult speaks which language, and they tend to be able to switch to another more seamlessly.   Also, don’t forget to make the learning experience fun! Remember, they’re kids.   Involve songs or graphic books that come in a language that they’re trying to learn, and be consistent. Don’t forget to take breaks though, because although the experience can be fun, learning is also exhausting. You don’t want your kids to burn out and associate language learning with an unsavory experience. Cognitive Skills The world operates on complex ideas, and your kids make up the generation that will inherit the earth and its advancement.   Developing their cognitive ability allow them to process complex ideas, be assertive, and solve problems. Never discourage your children when they’re exploring, being creative, or asking questions – all of those are crucial in developing effective thinking skills.   Critical Thinking Many grown-ups still struggle with problem-solving skills. Maybe it’s because it wasn’t encouraged in their generation to think critically and were forced to conform instead. Don’t do that to your kids!   Now, getting your children to develop the ability to think critically can be a challenge as it requires some form of emotional management, resilience, and a conducive situation to take on the learning process – basically, all of the 4 above mentioned factors (physical well-being, effective communication, good health and well-rested, and a good social environment) to be optimum for the journey to be pleasant.   As parents, it is imperative to exercise patience when guiding and facilitating critical-thinking learning, do a lot of research, and answer your children’s questions well no matter how silly you may think they are!   STEM Education We can’t have advancement if we’re not well-versed in STEM!   STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) is a branch of discipline your kids definitely don’t want to miss out on. As the world constantly evolves and gets more complex, those who are left behind are those who are clueless about how technology works.   STEM education combines the four disciplines harmoniously in a learning session – and it’s found to be more effective than segregating them in separate sessions.   Children who are educated in STEM early on are found to be better at critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, collaboration, and effective communication.   It also doesn’t hurt that STEM-related jobs are in demand and will still be in demand in the future, so prepare your kids for a good career prospect by educating them early!   While many schools nowadays have incorporated STEM-style classroom sessions, more often than not, these schools are private and expensive.   Worry not though – we at Timedoor can serve your kids' STEM needs through our coding classes that are suitable for ages 8 and above. Our classes are small in size, so each child will receive optimum attention from our instructors.   Coding is the gateway for further STEM pursuits, so it truly will serve your children well to get them started in coding.   For more information about Timedoor Coding Academy, please visit this link.  
Choosing The Right School for Your Children
Choosing The Right School for Your Children
It’s hard to pick a school for your children, huh?   Choosing where your children would spend a good chunk of their days to receive formal education is one of the most challenging milestones in the lives of parents and guardians. So many things to consider. So little time – your children are growing up as you’re reading this.    Parents in the olden days seemed to have less of a stress when it came to picking schools for their kids. They tended to just haul their children to whichever schools were nearest that are within budget, and they were inclined to almost blindly trust the teachers that they would do the job well. The curriculums that were in place and how they were taught were pretty much standardized. Students in those days were expected to just flourish under a uniform system, and when they couldn’t keep up academically, the blame was almost always put on them – they didn’t study hard enough, they played too much, or worse:    They were resigned to the belief that they were just plain stupid.   Yeah, no.    The current science understands that children came in all sizes and forms, and that variety includes needs that are unique. Some children are just born with the dispositions that are meant for the standardized curriculum while some others are not.    The famous quote "Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." is often misattributed to Albert Einstein (source is unclear), but that error does not diminish the validity of the quote – you can’t view children as monolithic beings.   Your children are unique and all of them need schools that would bring the best out of them that would cater to their specific needs. This is why picking the right school for your children is important, and having the right set of information is half the battle.   Let’s get into the factors to consider when you’re trying to choose which school is best for your children! Types of Schools Just as there are many kinds of children, each with distinct needs and interests, schools also come in a variety of types. The types of schools available are also dependent on where you are living or planning to enrol your children. A few examples will be given as follows:   Public Schools Depending on where you are located, public schools can also be known as state schools or government schools. Public schools are either wholly funded or partly funded by the local government using taxpayers' money allocated for education purposes.   A typical public school has a large classroom size – often accommodating more than 20 pupils at a time with schedules that are usually rigid and uniform across the state or country. Public schools are regulated and controlled directly by education departments of each country’s ministry of education or its equivalents.   Public schools either charge parents or guardians relatively affordable tuition fees or are entirely free. Public schools in some countries also provide meals and lunches for a very low cost or for free. In a lot of countries, admission to this type of school usually is contingent on your address of residency – meaning that your children can only enrol on schools that are within relative proximity to your home.   Public schools typically serve pre-kindergarten to secondary/high school-aged children.   If your children are enrolled in a public school, you can expect your children to study the curriculums that have been designed by the state’s education department, be exposed to a large number of students that come from various socio-economic backgrounds, and pay very little or nothing for their education.   Private Schools Private or independent schools (interchangeable depending on countries) are typically funded through the tuition fees they charge the parents or guardians, or are partly funded by the organization that they are tied to. In general, private schools do not receive funding from the state government so they could cost you some pretty penny if you decide to enrol your children in this type of school.   How private schools are run differs from country to country. In some countries, the curriculums that are being taught in private schools still generally adhere to their respective state education department with some liberty to add and modify the structure. In some other, private schools are almost wholly independent, meaning that these schools are in charge of their own governance, finances, and curriculums.   Religious schools (Catholic schools, Madrasahs, etc) typically fall under the umbrella of private schools in some jurisdictions. Some religious states can have religious schools as their public schools.   Charter Schools Charter schools are, in essence, a marriage between public schools and private schools, in which they receive public funding but are governed privately. Charter schools enjoy the autonomy of governance and are much more flexible in designing their curriculums and school hours, but they have to be accountable for the performance and welfare of the students under their care.    In short, they still have to answer to the government if and when their student's well-being and academic needs are not being met according to each country’s respective accountability standards.   Curriculum  People often measure the excellence of a school by the kind of curriculum it offers. It makes sense because a curriculum dictates students’ experience throughout their academic life. As parents, it is your duty to understand your children’s individual needs and interests, and factor them into which schools would they fit best.   The following are 2 curriculums that are globally reputable with more and more schools adopting them wholly or imparting aspects of them into their standard curriculums:   Cambridge Assessment International Education Designed and formulated by the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, this is one of the foremost curriculums and is recognized by many countries. The Cambridge curriculum is well-established with the reputation of holistically educating students in 4 fields – Science, Mathematics, Humanities, and Languages. Around 10,000 schools globally have adopted the Cambridge way of educating students.   This curriculum trains students in disciplines such as critical thinking, effective research, and analytical skills. The Cambridge qualification (A-Level) is suitable for students who know what they want to do in their further academic studies, and they have a degree of liberty to pick and choose the subjects they study that would best fit their aptitudes and interests.   Students educated in the Cambridge curriculum will have a competitive advantage that will set them apart from their peers who are studying under less globally-recognized curriculums.   International Baccalaureate (IB) This education framework was developed in Switzerland and is currently being offered in 4,500+ schools across the globe. Students under the IB program have more freedom to curate their own learning experience compared to its Cambridge equivalent.    Aside from the regular academic subjects, students are also encouraged to be independent thinkers by way of having them take on projects of their choosing while being guided by the teachers   The IB qualification is recognized worldwide, thus, students with an IB diploma tend to fare very well in a global setting.   STEM-focused education framework deserves an honourable mention as it is progressive, time-relevant, and is much needed in an increasingly digital world. Many schools in a lot of countries are starting to impart STEM education methodologies in their science and mathematics classrooms, so you may want to include this when doing your due diligence as parents or guardians.   Lastly, parents also need to consider the diversity of co-curricular/extra-curricular activities that are being offered by the school. The availability of diverse extra-curricular activities enriches the learning experience and bolsters your children’s education holistically. Look for schools that offer STEM, sports, and art-related activities to engage your children after school.   Classroom Size & Population Diversity These two factors affect the effectiveness of students’ learning. Educators and academic institutions worldwide are becoming increasingly aware of the positive impacts that can be created by prioritizing them in schools.   Classroom Size Matters A study that was done in the late 1980s on Class-Size Reduction (CSR) in Tennessee under the name of Student Teacher Achievement Ratio (STAR) showed a direct correlation between smaller class sizes and students’ academic performance.    This study compared the effectiveness of learning between two classes of differing student densities. One class was filled with just 15 students, while the other class was populated by 22 students, with teachers randomly assigned between the two classes. The result of the study revealed that the classroom with fewer students performed comparatively better than the classroom with more students. Quantitatively, the smaller classroom performance was on par with students who had received an extra three months of schooling.   This result makes sense as a smaller classroom size means that teachers and facilitators have more time to focus on each student during a classroom period. A smaller population can also mean that there’s less distraction when class is in session Population Diversity As the world’s population is becoming more interconnected with the advent of digitization, children are being exposed to cultural identities and features that are diverse and different from themselves. Diversity does not only include race, skin colour, and ethnicity, but also religions, socio-economic standing, and mother tongues.    Students that feel represented by their peers and the teaching staff may feel a sense of belonging in that school. That feeling of being able to relate between teachers and students may create a savoury experience for learners, which would incentivize students to want to be in school and ultimately gain a valuable education.   Teaching Staff & School Facilities The way the school is set up, the quality of teachers that are hired, and the facilities to accommodate a conducive learning experience are important factors to consider when choosing a school for your children.   Qualified Teachers A quality teacher is someone who is patient, kind, knowledgeable, and an excellent communicator, which are qualities that you hope will be passed down to your children. Remember, during these formative years in school, your children’s brains behave like a “sponge”, in which they absorb a lot of information and stimulus that they’re exposed to.   As parents and guardians, it is incumbent on you to visit your children’s prospective schools, meet with the principals and teaching staff, and ask a lot of questions.   What kind of formal qualifications do the teachers have? How do they resolve conflicts between students? What is the best way to communicate with the teachers? How do they teach the subjects?   A good teacher should show enthusiasm and a love for teaching. They should also be able to appease the worries that you as parents might have. Again, communicate your questions, and ask a lot of them.   Last but not least, look for schools that are staffed with teachers that are trained to perform first-aid procedures such as Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and abdominal thrusts (Heimlich Maneuver), and are equipped with the knowledge to deal with common allergy triggers and symptoms.   School Facilities Depending on where you live and your socio-economic background, concerns over school facilities may vary.   Those of you who live in tropical countries may be able to get by comfortably with classroom fans, but for students in countries that experience winter, working heaters are a necessity.   Also, with the burgeoning need for being digitized, schools nowadays need to be able to accommodate IT education. Up-to-date computers, WiFi connections, and tablets may be considered basic needs as they are able to better facilitate learning in general. Digitization has also made remote learning possible and necessary in some cases, so the school would need to cater to this specific way of learning.   It is also important to consider, especially for parents and guardians with children who have special needs and disabilities, to choose schools with infrastructures that are able to accommodate their specific conditions. Ramps, bannisters, Braille writing systems in strategic locations, and general accessibility are getting more and more normalized as a part of a school’s basic infrastructure.   Wealthier private schools that charge premium tuition fees tend to come with premium facilities such as air-conditioned or heated classrooms. They may also be equipped with state-of-the-art gymnasiums, swimming pools, running tracks, and multi-purpose courts just to name a few.   It is nice to have your children studying in a school that is able to cater to each student's unique and often changing needs, but don't break your bank and compromise the quality of life of your family. Remember, as long as your children’s basic physiological and psychological needs are fulfilled, they can thrive in a decent school.   Budget The budgetary concern is one of the major factors that affect parents' and guardians' decision making.   As mentioned previously, public schools are typically the less expensive (or free) option whereas private schools cost money – often very expensive, charging upwards of USD 150,000+ (Collège Alpin Beau Soleil, Switzerland) for their annual tuition fee.   Sound financial planning on the parent's or guardians' part is therefore imperative if one chooses to enrol their children on a private school because, for some families, the tuition fee alone would make up a considerable chunk of the household’s overhead.   Parents and guardians may want to set up a special fund either in the form of savings or insurance/investments. Your fund in savings typically will not beget you as much growth compared to education insurance schemes. Education insurance, however, is a much riskier path as the funds will be managed as an investment by the bodies you choose to purchase the policies from.   Whatever you choose to do when it comes to funding your children’s education though, it is best that it does not burden the household too much that it compromises the family’s comfort at home. Remember, your children would typically spend more time at home than they do at school, so observance of your children and other members of the family’s basic needs (sustenance, clothing, and shelter) should be your top priority.   Location Where your children’s future school is located is a major consideration factor. Location affects commute time, accessibility, and overall comfort for your children. Your area of residence is sometimes a factor that affects enrolment in public schools per some countries’ regulations. Private and charter schools are generally able to accept students regardless of their zip codes.   If you have a personal vehicle, then the location of your children's school may not be as crucial a factor. If you don’t, however, then your children’s school need to be accessible by public transport, located in a safe neighbourhood, and preferably within proximity to public health facilities, law enforcement, and fire stations.   Conclusion There are many factors to consider when you want to choose a school for your children and they can be overwhelming. You may take your time to understand how each factor ranks on your priority list, but do make your children’s needs, interests, and aptitudes the highest on that list.
What is STEM Education?
What is STEM Education?
The world is ever-changing. This fact, ironically, is unchanging.   Our world constantly invents and reinvents itself, and one’s reluctance to keep up with an increasingly complex world is an injurious tendency. The only way to not be left behind is to have an understanding of how today’s world works and how it would work in the future.   To ensure that our youth is able to keep pace with the constant changes, a good grasp of the disciplines that drive progress is important. Those disciplines are: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics — often abbreviated as STEM. The way we can instil and develop their interest in these areas is also crucial because,   How can one excel at anything they’re indifferent toward?   Now, let’s look into what STEM education is, how it can be taught effectively, and why they are important!   STEM Education. What Is It? Many parents seem to have got bitten by the “STEM” bug now that a lot of them are either talking about it, seriously considering it, or have already enrolled their children in schools that offer the program. Really though,   What is STEM education? How does it differ from the regular, conventional way of teaching the subjects? Why are more and more parents making STEM a priority in their children’s education?   STEM education is a program that teaches students in the aforementioned disciplines in a holistic, practical manner. In other words, it is an interdisciplinary approach that focuses on hands-on learning and critical problem-solving skills.   STEM education is often a collaborative endeavour between school teachers and parents/guardians. After all, children are only going to spend so much time in school, so it is imperative that parents/guardians take on the role of education facilitators as well.   How Does STEM Education Differ from Regular Science & Math Class? Traditionally, the field of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics are taught separately with little emphasis on how these four areas are interconnected. STEM education can be seen as the reformed version of the conventional teaching methodology where it integrates all four in a single academic program.    Again, STEM programs often put a heavier emphasis on developing the ability to find solutions for real-world problems so that the students are equipped with practical skills that are applicable to, well, real-life situations.    A lot of schools that offer STEM programs conduct their Science and Mathematics classes in a collaborative manner, with small projects that encourage critical thinking to solve problems.    Examples of STEM Projects  Some examples of STEM-oriented projects:   - Paper Aeroplane (Designing, Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, Creativity)   A properly designed and made paper aeroplane is going to fall much slower to the ground than a balled-up piece of paper. Students are encouraged to test the laws of aerodynamics by designing paper aeroplanes that are able to travel the furthest and fall the slowest. This project integrates Science (Physics) and Engineering.   - Static Electricity with Plastic Comb (Critical Thinking, Problem Solving)   This experiment tests the occurrence of static electricity using two daily items such as a plastic comb and a piece of paper. The other thing that you’d need is a head full of hair. A plastic comb is not going to draw torn bits of paper to itself unless an action that generates static electricity is done to it. To draw the paper bits in a “magnetic” fashion, one would need to comb one’s hair repeatedly and bring the comb close to the paper bits. Now watch the comb “attract” the paper bits in amazement.   - LegoⓇ Bricks Coding (Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, Creativity)   This project teaches students the principles of coding — an important computer programming that is very in demand now that is only going to grow in popularity. To participate in the project, teachers would need to design a LegoⓇ maze with an “entrance” and an “exit”, print out some coding commands, and prepare tokens (small figurines) as points of reference. Students are encouraged to collaborate to give directional commands to get the tokens to “exit” the maze. Plenty of fun and very engaging.   There are countless fun-filled STEM activities that would engage students and at the same time, instil interests in the discipline and further develop their passion. Most of these STEM projects can also be done in the comfort of your home. For more ideas on STEM-oriented activities, you can visit the links here and here.   How To Get Students To Commit to STEM Education All children at their cores are pure, inquisitive beings. They are naturally curious and are eager to explore things that are unknown to them, so it really falls on responsible adults to nurture, hone, and direct them to things that would satisfy their unique needs.    A few ways to get them excited for STEM:   Be Thoroughly Prepared You can’t possibly conduct an effective learning session as an unprepared facilitator. The quality of knowledge of whatever you are about to impart to your children wholly depends on your own understanding of the subject.    Set aside time and energy to research the experiments and projects in which you are about to involve your children, and understand how any or more of the four disciplines of STEM is a part of said projects.   After all, a good student is only as good as their teachers, and good teachers are the ones who come prepared.    Make Learning Exciting Learning can only be effective when it is fun and relatable. If it does not strike a chord, is boring, or is too serious that it quickly exhausts your children’s mental bandwidth, then you will lose their engagement. A disengaged learner is a lost one.    Practical projects are inherently exciting because of their engaging nature and they fuel fun through creativity. Aside from the activity examples previously provided, facilitators need to understand each learner’s unique inclination and curate the appropriate curriculum/program that would best serve their disposition.   For example, a child who has shown an aptitude for discovery and puzzles may be inclined to enjoy activities such as LegoⓇ Bricks Coding whereas those who have shown a strong interest in aeroplanes in the sky may be better served with the paper aeroplane experiment.   Give Examples of Successful People in STEM (Fictional or Real) For the learners to be excited about something, you may want to provide examples of individuals that are successful in the fields that they’re about to learn.   These individuals can be fictional or real, and whom to introduce to your children largely depends on their existing knowledge of the figures or the aspects of the disciplines that you are about to impart.   Children who are into superheroes may respond very well if you began the inception to learning by talking about STEM-oriented superheroes such as the tech-savvy Tony Stark from Marvel’s Ironman and gadget reliant Bruce Wayne from Batman from DC.   Involve Their Parents/Guardians As previously mentioned, students are only going to spend a fraction of their productive time in academic institutions. Most of their successes rest on the time that they would spend outside of school – at home.    A research done by National Coalition for Parent Involvement in Education has shown that regardless of a student’s socio-economic background, the ones with hands-on parents/guardians tend to perform better in terms of test scores, discipline, behaviour, and exhibit desirable social behaviour.    To ensure an optimal and holistic learning experience, parents and teachers must collaborate in figuring out each child’s unique needs and interests, and coming up with tailored solutions that would best serve them. The activity examples given in the previous section can easily be done at home under parental supervision.   Facilitators may also want to use positive reinforcement, give good comments, ask open-ended questions, and be animated in their teaching. There are many methods that are considered teaching best practices. Click on this link to understand what is considered the most effective way to teach.   The most important thing to note when it comes to teaching your students is to have a firm grasp on the learning structure, and to be patient and kind.   Why STEM education? The common benefits of STEM Education are: - Critical Thinking - Problem Solving - Creativity - Collaboration - Effective Communication Those benefits also happen to be the kind of qualities that many industries look for in a professional.    The Demand for STEM Professionals The United States is currently experiencing a shortage of professionals to fill their STEM-related job vacancies as reported here and here. By 2025, the US will need to fill about 3.5 million jobs, and STEM-savvy professionals will make an overwhelmingly huge chunk of that demand.   Globally, the issue isn’t that much better. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) projects that by 2030, there will be a worrying lack of global professionals to fill the 85 million tech-related job vacancies, based on the data provided by Korn Ferry management consulting firm. That figure suggests that STEM-related industries are going to grow at an exponential rate and the schools are not producing enough STEM talents to appropriately satisfy the demand.   STEM-related professions also pay relatively higher than their non-STEM counterparts as indicated here. In many cases, the salary for STEM professions can be as much as twice the salary of jobs in other industries.   STEM is Good for Other Industries and Disciplines A person educated in STEM does not always have to work for STEM-related industries or go to specific countries to make full use of their skills.   Being a great problem solver, creative thinker, and effective communicator are qualities that are attractive in any field of work, no matter which industry. For instance, there is a demand in the legal industry for STEM graduates and professionals with STEM-related qualities.   Some examples of individuals trained in STEM that work for non-STEM industries:   -  Angela Merkel, the former chancellor of Germany, is a physics and chemistry major who got into politics and went on to lead the country’s government.    - Mayim Bialik, a Doctor of Neuroscience who chose to work in the entertainment industry and made it big with the show The Big Bang Theory – she was hired partly due to her expertise in neuroscience to play a neuroscientist in the show where she got to help the showrunners write for her character. Mayim was paid $425,000 per episode for her work in the show.   There are limitless opportunities for those who are trained in the STEM disciplines. Getting your children educated early in STEM is only going to serve them well in the future when they finally enter their productive, working age.   Who Can Do STEM? Everyone. Everyone can do and excel in STEM.    Often parents and educators espouse the notion that learners that seem to have more dominant “left brains” are best suited for STEM majors and subsequently careers, whereas “right-brained” students are steered towards other pursuits.   The left-brain/right-brain principle is a myth and has been debunked by notable scientific scholars. A group of neuroscience experts in Utah, US, did a study that involved putting 1,000 people on brain scans while they were performing activities such as lying flat and reading. The result of the brain scans reading did not produce evidence of any hemispherical dominance when doing those tasks.   The following TED-Talk would serve as a very good explanation of why any child of any aptitude and disposition can and should be trained in STEM disciplines.   Getting to the Roots of STEM Education | Melissa & Lavanya Jawaharlal | TEDxCPP   When To Start STEM Education?   Opinions vary as to when to start introducing aspects of STEM discipline to a child, but one suggests that toddlers as young as two-year-old.   The first spurt in a child’s brain development happens at around two years of age and slows down and concludes when they reach the age of seven (eight in some cases). During this critical period, one could say that a child’s brain is like a sponge – ready to soak up any information, stimulus, and knowledge that their environment is going to give them.    STEM education can be employed in many different forms depending on how old a learner is and at which stage of learning development they are. For examples of age-appropriate STEM games and educational materials, visit this link.   What if your children are over the age of the “critical period”?    Worry not, as human brains continue to develop up to the age of 25. Nothing is too late, but the younger you start endearing your loved ones with STEM disciplines, the better off they will be.   Here at Timedoor, we provide coding classes (very STEM-y!) that are appropriate for children 8 and up with small class sizes so that each child will receive the optimal attention and focus from our facilitators.    For more information about Timedoor Coding Academy, please visit this link. We can’t wait to have your children join our fun-filled classes that will surely inculcate early interest in coding and possibly, other STEM-related disciplines.   Remember, STEM principles translate well into other disciplines so you could expect the benefits of your children’s extracurricular coding classes with Timedoor Coding Academy to reflect on their academic performance.
float button