STEM skills are critical for your children's future success, and this learning website is chock-full of boredom-busting activities and ideas to get them excited about science, technology, and more.
What is STEM, and why should I care about it?
No, it's not just the stalk of a plant - STEM is an acronym for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, and aims to integrate these four important learning subjects using an interdisciplinary approach with real-world applications. STEM is important because it impacts every area of our lives, from the economy to transportation to choosing which mobile phone provider to go with. And there's a serious lack of young professionals in STEM fields, which means those who are currently employed and having successful careers in STEM fall into the same general demographic categories when it comes to gender, ethnicity, class, and social groups. So there are massive opportunities for our children to shape the future of STEM - and lots of well-paying future jobs which are going to need STEM-savvy workers. Technology is changing faster than we can imagine, so we need to keep up!
So where does MindlabKids.com come in?
It's a free video-based learning website for kids ages five to 12 where they can have fun with STEM, learn amazing science skills, have a go at interesting hands-on STEM activities they can do at home, and never say the words "I'm bored!" again. Best of all, it's backed by The Mind Lab by Unitec and Spark and it's FREE. Every parent's favourite four-letter word.
Why will your children (and you) love MindlabKids.com?
Put simply, the whole experience is tailor-made for children age five to 12. It's colourful, high-energy, and designed to spark their curiosity. And here are five more reasons they'll quickly become obsessed (trust us, it's a good thing) with STEM once they've taken a look at the MindlabKids.com website.
1. It makes learning super-fun.
The site is full of video-based challenges, each presented by one of the hilariously silly cast of characters who teach each lesson. There are nine "Superhero Edtech Educators", some of them you will recognize if you pay a visit to The Mind Lab by Unitec including Professor D, Viking Rich, Coco & Co, Oopsie Daisy, and Pineapple Eros. They wear silly costumes and present each challenge in a fun, engaging way that makes children want to get involved. And the learning topics are awesome - robotics, 3D design, animation and stop motion, movie-making, coding, programming, electronic engineering, augmented reality and more.
2. Every child we know wants to make videos of themselves
Rather than getting sucked into a black hole of watching other kids unbox toys on YouTube (save us!), MindlabKids.com gives your children a genuinely educational reason to create short videos. From learning how echoes work, to investigating why human babies can't walk when they're born yet animal babies can, the challenges will get kids thinking creatively and taking the time to put together a response to upload to the website. Then other kids can watch their videos and give feedback - which is what the whole "Watch me do this!" aspect of video-making is all about for kids anyway.
3. They can make messes and experiment.
Yes, our children love screen time more than is healthy for them, so you can suck them into getting started with MindlabKids.com by telling them they have your express permission to watch videos on this website. But to participate in the challenges engages your children's five senses as well as their STEM-learning brains, and they'll love the opportunity to get hands-on with experiments and investigations. Because we all know that even more than screen time, children love to make messes - in the name of learning, natch.
4. They'll never, ever get bored.
What two-word sentence strikes fear and loathing into the heart of every parent during the school holidays? "I'm boooooooored!" Fortunately, there are so many challenges on the MindlabKids.com website that we fail to see how your child could ever possibly run out of things to try. Seriously, we lost count at 100, and there are three new challenges launched every week. "I'm bored" won't be a thing in your house any more when you can reply, "What's new to do on checked MindlabKids.com?" It's the ultimate boredom-buster.
5. You'll both have peace of mind knowing it's a safe experience.
MindlabKids.com is for kids - and this means it's closely and regularly monitored to ensure that everyone is playing by the House Rules. Your child can tinker, explore, be creative, feel encouraged, and be entertained in a space that feels safe for them to grow and learn. Challenges are fun, not stressful, and the grownups involved in the website are there to support and guide children so they want to come back for more. It's a virtual STEM lab where your child has the freedom to think and express themselves, make mistakes, fail, change their thinking, and bounce back, in a zone that's designed to help them thrive. MindlabKids.com is a feel-good place, which is what our children need.
For more information, to check out what's on offer, or to sign your child up for a free MindlabKids.com account