The past sixth months, I’ve been finding my programming “legs” at a new branch. With my team’s help, we had some wildly successful summer school age programs, but, with school now back in session, I wanted to offer some additional programming for our younger friends.
A colleague of mine from Cuyahoga County Public Library’s Fairview Park Branch, Jennifer Haag, had presented on Preschool STEAM at an Ohio Library Council Chapter Conference a few years ago. It was a wonderful presentation, offering a full year of monthly program plans. So, to dip my toes in the water, I chose ONE of her programs—October—to try this year.
Quite simply—it was a lot of fun.
The families and staff performed all the science experiments together, and then participants had the opportunity to spend time at Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math stations throughout the room.
Which liquids will dissolve candy corn and peeps—water, hot water, seltzer, vegetable oil, or vinegar? You’ll have to try yourself to see, but I’ll say that peeps may survive the apocalypse! We lifted the M’s off M&M’s (a fun and easy project). And the most visually fun experiment—making Skittles rainbows! I bought cheap plastic plates from the dollar store. Kids make patterns with Skittles around the edge, and then an adult pours warm waters into the center of the plate. Lots of excitement over this project! Finally, we ended this segment with me (an adult) making two pumpkin-canos.
Then they were free to explore. The “Technology Table” featured making creepy music on iPads. Our youngest participant loved pounding on the keys and making noise. Building with gum drops, candy corn, spaghetti and toothpicks proved to be a popular “Engineering Table.” Families made their own paper jack o’lanterns with pre-cut pumpkins and face parts (thanks, Cricut!) for the “Art Table.” And the “Math Table” went back to candy corn. Kids could pick them out of sensory bins filled with beans to sort, count, and make shapes.
I’d encourage you to try a Preschool STEAM program. Whole families came, and kids of all ages got into the various projects. There really was something for everyone.
What programs have you done?
This post covers the Core Competency of Programming Skills.