DIY STEM Project Ideas for Children

Kids are natural scientists, always curious and experimenting with everything they see and touch. And parents can play a big role in developing and cultivating this curiosity by fostering a culture of experimentation at home. 

If you're a parent looking for a meaningful activity to do with your child that isn't tied to chores or slogging through boring schoolwork, there are numerous science and tech projects you can accomplish in the comfort of your own home, using materials that are accessible and easy to find. 

To get you started, here are basic project ideas you can do with your kids at home. These projects can assist in reinforcing critical life skills and may also ignite a lifelong interest in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

Tinker With LED Circuits

A LED circuit on a breadboard is the ideal beginner circuit for children to experiment with. It’s also a great way to educate them on how electricity works and how it should be handled. Parents can also take this chance to caution them about its risks.

The Mand Labs Magic of LED STEM Electronics Kit is a great starting project. It features five engaging projects based on capacitors, transistors, buzzers, and LEDs to uniquely expose kids to real-world electronics. The projects included in the kit are the Automatic Night Lamp, Glow an LED, Touch-Activated Switch, Beep a Buzzer, and Creating a Flash Using a Capacitor.

Assemble Awesome Robots

Children can learn STEM topics in a practical setting through a robotics project. They get to easily digest knowledge on how to build, create, and program robots. They can also learn to think creatively via the use of robots. 

The Barnabas Robotics Rover: Arduino-Compatible, Barnabas Robotics Arduino-Compatible Robot Arm Kit With Joystick Control, and Barnabas Robotics Critter Bot are some of the simplest but fun projects to get children into robotics. No soldering required, too! Kids frequently have dreams of what they would like to build, and robotics fulfills such fantasies and obsessions.

Build A Bridge

Children can gain plenty of knowledge about the basics of structural engineering, mathematical measuring, and ratio by building a model or miniature bridge. You can start this project by asking your kids to look up actual bridges online and then sketch out their structures. Advanced learners can even go into the physics behind it, which is another approach to deepen their grasp of structures and patterns.

To start building their own miniature Golden Gate or Brooklyn Bridge at home, all your child needs are popsicle sticks, wooden skewers, strings, and a little bit of glue. You can also ask them to paint their bridge when they’re done with construction.

Make A Coin Battery

Did you know you can make batteries out of pennies and nickels? If your mind was blown by that fact, wait until you see your kid’s reaction. 

I’ll save you a Google search and do you a solid. Here’s how it works. Pennies are made of copper, while nickels are composed of zinc, making them both good conductors of electricity. A chemical reaction happens at the surface of two distinct metals functioning as electrodes when they are joined by an electrolyte. When linked with a wire, these electrodes create an electrical current.

The coin battery experiment is definitely a surefire way to create a spark of curiosity among children, and it’s also very easy to do! All you need are a stack of nickels and pennies, coffee filters or paper towels, salt, white vinegar, a multimeter, and a small LED pin light.

Create Stop-Motion Movies

We've all watched the entertaining stop-motion clips on the internet, but you've probably never considered making one yourself or, even better, with your children. It’s a great way to teach STEM concepts creatively! 

Your children may discover the technology and art of filmmaking, and make a video that is specifically tailored to their tastes and interests. They can be the next Tim Burton using just simple and accessible gadgets and equipment, such as a smartphone or a digital camera and a table light.

Simulate An Oil Spill

This is a simple way to explain a complex subject to children. All you need to do is combine oil and water in a large jar containing a few feathers. After that, ask your kid to separate the oil from the feathers and out of the water using tools like spoons, paper towels, and sponges. 

You can even teach them a lesson on environmental destruction by challenging them to remove all the oil without losing too much water inside the jar. By letting them see how the oil harmed the feathers and how hard it was to get it out of the water, this project can be used to demonstrate how oil spills can have an impact on the ecosystem.