You’re probably already familiar with the term STEM or STEAM as it’s become an educational buzz word in recent years. Science, technology, engineering, art and math, are considered the most important skills for life in the 21st century; and while it may sound intimidating, it doesn’t have to be.
So, what does baking a cake have to do with STEAM education? Let me show you the recipe for a tasty learning experience you can share with your kids.
Science: Observe the chemistry of how the separate ingredients combine to make something new — and delicious.
Technology: How does the oven work? How much more difficult would this be without an electric mixer? You could also research all the amazing kitchen gadgets currently available.
Engineering: Why does a tube pan have a hole in the middle? Often I have to stack multiple layers (or tiers) of a cake in order to make sure they don’t fall — I also have to figure out what sort of support system is needed. Have you ever seen one of those topsy turvy cakes? It’s not magic, it’s engineering — and yes, occasionally there are power tools involved.
Math: You have to be aware of what the different units and measurements mean. If you want to make a bigger or smaller batch of something, then you’ll have to use your skills to adjust the recipe. Measure carefully and check your work.
Arts: This is my favorite part — decorating — mixing colors for icing or gum paste, drawing with piping tips, designing where I want to place the flowers, or Rae from Star Wars, or the handmade, edible Mardi Gras beads. This is your chance to get really creative. You can even employ science, technology, engineering and math again in your artwork.
Check out the resources below to discover even more exciting STEAM ideas and activities.
Ask a Librarian is a service available to patrons via phone or email (online chat coming soon). Not only can librarians provide book recommendations for you and your child, they can help you in so many other ways — they can actually help you find answers to the world’s most fascinating questions. For example, they can …
So, the real question is … What are you going to Ask a Librarian?