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STEAMboxes

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  • Children playing with Steamboxes
    Children playing with STEAMboxes
  • Some of our STEAMboxes
    Some of our handpainted STEAMboxes

Idea Exchange | October 1, 2018

What are STEAMboxes? They are a unique on-site learning experience for children (Ages 6+) to explore with a parent/guardian. Available starting October 1 at Idea Exchange, Old Post Office. Learn more about these exciting learning opportunities for children below.

STEAM = Science-Technology-Engineering-Art-Math

Our STEAMboxes offer a broad spectrum of interdisciplinary experiential learning opportunities for children to explore with parents/guardians.

Children are most engaged and learn best when they can apply the same principles and concepts in different settings across multiple disciplines. For example, colour and light are just as relevant to learning optics as to painting and photography.

Each STEAMbox at Idea Exchange offers a unique “take away and play” interdisciplinary learning experience for a child or small group of children to explore with a parent inside the library for an hour or an afternoon. To help achieve a developmentally appropriate experience, each STEAMbox also indicates an age range for the activities and resources inside. To foster engagement, each box is artfully crafted to reflect its contents. But you can’t find out exactly what’s inside until the librarian checks it out and unlocks it for you. Nothing engages children like a little bit of mystery. Checking out a new STEAMbox feels like opening a birthday present!

Want an idea of what’s headed your way? Check out our Bee Bot box! Inside you’ll find resources on insects, a small programmable Bee-Bot robot, activity mats, and dance moves. Our “Print and Press” box offers the chance to make art with stencils, rubbings, and more. Borrow our LED light panel along with it to practice tracing and combining whatever images you might have on paper. Explore the Bloxels box and create your own video game using colourful coding blocks. Discover the science and magic of circuitry with our MaKey MaKey box.

Included in each box alongside the resources are detailed instructions and activity suggestions, lists of related resources to extend learning (i.e. lists of related books, videos, etc.), and links to opportunities for children to describe and share their experiences with others.

Coming soon will be a “STEAMblog” where children can share photos of their creations and short videos of their experiences with others online. Take a photo of your engineering creation, have a librarian scan your stencil or rubbing mosaic, shoot a short video of your robotic antics, or write a short article explaining your work of art, and then share it with the world.

Each STEAMbox has been thoughtfully crafted and curated for you by the education and information professionals at Idea Exchange. We do the research and the work so you can simply show up and explore with your kids in a comfortable and inspiring setting. Enjoy!