STEM, while a short, seemingly harmless word on the surface, can present a variety of challenges for any student or parent who is unfamiliar.
Science, technology, engineering, AND math? That’s a lot to cram into such a simple acronym.
If you’ve been wanting to get your kid or teen more involved in STEM, but have been discouraged by any number of roadblocks, we are here to help!
Believe it or not, sparking a passion for STEM and getting a child started along their journey can begin right now—with robotics.
Breaking into STEM through robotics
One of the most effective ways for any child to get going with STEM is through robotics. Thanks to its hands-on nature, the availability of robotics clubs at school, simple robot toys for home, and nearby robotics classes or summer camps, it has never been easier.
Robotics clubs at school
In case you didn’t know, a robotics club is a gathering of students, who after school, will get together to learn and work with—you guessed it—robots. Such clubs typically take place in a school classroom, and are moderated by a member of the teaching staff or school administration.
Clubs sometimes compete at local STEM competitions, where teams of students are tasked with designing and building a robot to take on opponents in a series of challenges.
The main benefit for those interested in STEM—but unsure of where to begin—is that a robotics club is a relatively easy, low-cost way to get your student involved.
Such clubs help to strengthen your student’s STEM skills, both hard and soft. Creativity and problem-solving are essential in building a 'bot that can overcome obstacles, and your child will have to think outside the box and come up with creative solutions when the robot doesn’t perform as expected.
Last but not least, hanging out with like-minded peers is always beneficial, providing a valuable way for kids to make friends and build their networks.
With robotics toys, at home
Many of today’s “toys” barely resemble the traditional definition of the word thanks to the inclusion of different educational components.
For instance, the SparkFun Inventor’s Kit (SIK) is a great way to get your child started with coding and hardware interaction using the Arduino programming language.
I know what you’re thinking... coding and programming? What does this have to do with robotics? And I thought this was supposed to be an easy way to get involved?
Well, coding is the underpinning of robotics, providing the instructions a robot needs to read in order to execute actions.
And toys make coding and robotics easy. For example, the SIK includes everything your child needs to complete five in-depth projects consisting of 16 interconnected circuits. These projects teach everything from blinking an LED to reading sensors and more. The culminating project is your child’s very own autonomous robot!
This is just one example of many different available robotics “toys” that are useful in getting kids and teens interested in robotics. LEGO, Cozmo, and VEX are additional options to look into.
At summer camp, with a robotics course
One of the biggest benefits of summer camp is that it allows campers to build a unique interest in something they might not otherwise have a chance to explore.
While many schools don’t offer courses in robotics, summer camps do. They also provide an environment free of pressure, homework, and tests.
Think of a robotics summer camp as a combination of robotics club and school, to an extent, where students get to experience the camaraderie and teambuilding of a club, and the learning aspect of school.
In the end, however, an entirely new experience is created; one that doesn’t really resemble a club or school at all, where kids can explore to their heart’s content, without being bound by curriculum and large, impersonal classrooms.
Instead, they have the freedom to create the projects they want to create, and can receive personalized learning thanks to small class sizes.
Summer camp is a unique venue for growth, allowing kids to become independent and self-confident, while socializing and making new friends, and even learning new skills, like robotics.
Ready to get started?
Summer is just a few months away, and programs are filling up fast!
We encourage you to consider the world’s #1 summer STEM camp for ages 7–19, with over 20 years of experience and 400,000 alumni.
Courses are led by top-tier instructors, so students build in-demand skills for futures in robotics, coding, game development, design, and more. Guaranteed small class sizes ensure personalized learning for all skill levels.
Courses sell-out quickly. Get started today at iDTech.com or call (888) 709-8324 for personalized course recommendations. Make unlimited updates to your registration up to 3 weeks before your session with no fees. You can also reserve your child's spot from $285 and pay the balance at your own pace by May.