In every child there is a little scientist, eager to explore the world around him or her. Merely throwing a rock or a paper boat into a pond to see whether it sinks or floats is in many ways a tiny little science investigation, capable of sparking a child’s imagination and bringing a smile to his or her face.
Yet despite the many ways in which children are naturally curious about science and nature, in the United States there is still a pressing need to improve education for the STEM subjects: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. While those may sound like advanced subjects, there is a growing body of evidence that suggests it is critical to introduce certain STEM concepts to children while they are young.
That is why Sesame Workshop is excited to announce the launch of Little Discoverers: Big Fun with Science, Math and More. This digital, interactive destination will include games, engaging videos, and hands-on activities aimed at inspiring young children to laugh and smile while they incorporate STEM concepts into everyday moments. And of course, no exploration of what makes science and math fun would be complete without some help from the beloved Sesame Street Muppets. Read More
Jessie Renee Hopkins is a Senior Writer and Game Designer in Sesame Workshop’s Department of Content Production. Dave Glauber is a Writer and Interactive Designer in Sesame Workshop’s Content Innovation Lab.
When my colleague, Dave Glauber, and I were asked to co-lead a workshop on Narrative Design at this year’s Interaction Design and Children (IDC) conference, we had no idea it would culminate with a giant cat face. As it turned out, we couldn’t have been happier that it did.
The IDC conference’s mission is to bring together designers, researchers, and educators to explore ways of creating better interactive learning experiences for children. Our goal for the workshop was to guide conference participants through adding a story to exhibits at the New York Hall of Science. We wanted find out if narrative elements would influence visitors, kids especially, to spend more time with the exhibits. The hope was, if we could do a better job of drawing kids in, we could do a better job of helping kids learn. Read More
America’s national parks are some of its greatest treasures. There is so much for young children to learn and explore when they visit them. Elmo, Murray and the rest of the Sesame Street gang have always loved spending time at national parks, and they think it’s about time more kids across the country joined in on the fun. That’s why Sesame Workshop, the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation have teamed up to create Sesame Street Explores National Parks, a multimedia parks experience for children ages 3-5, their families and educators. The project aims to help children learn more about science and the environment whether they are in a national park, a local park or even their own backyard. Read More
Teaching children about science, technology, engineering and mathematics, known as the STEM subjects, is an imperative we here at Sesame Street take seriously. STEM is not just a major part of the television show’s curriculum; Sesame Workshop makes print books, e-books, and mobile apps aimed at teaching young children about STEM.
Teaching STEM is a passion of ours, which is why we approached Ridgefield Academy in Connecticut to see if any of their teachers wanted to use our book Simple Science Experiments with Elmo and Friends, published by Dover Publications, in the classroom. That’s when we were introduced to Jerry Nash, a science teacher a Ridgefield who saw a way to take this teaching opportunity a step further.
He had his eighth grade students at Ridgefield Academy film the first graders who conducted the experiments. Then he had a group of third and fifth graders do a voice-over for an instructional science video he made. We were blown away by the time and effort Mr. Nash put into bringing Simple Science Experiments with Elmo and Friends to life. We wanted to feature a few clips from the video (see above) in the hopes that teachers and parents might be inspired to think about new ways they can make science fun and relevant for young children.
If you would like to learn more about Ridgefield Academy and the great educational work they do, click here. If you want to get a copy of Simple Science Experiments with Elmo and Friends, click here. And Mr. Nash wanted to let you know if you have any questions about his approach to teaching science, you can reach him here.