5 Ways To Inspire Innovation In Children
With our mission being inspiring the innovators of tomorrow, we thought it is fitting for us to begin discussing this buzz word, innovation.
Innovations are new ideas that solve problems that could potentially change the world for the better. Fire, electricity, computers, internet, smartphones are all examples of great innovations. But why is innovation so important? In today’s increasingly competitive and rapidly changing world, innovation positions us to address future problems in a better way. Being innovative is a strong skill for 21st century success.
We think that it is important to provide the building blocks for innovation by starting early! As a parent to a 2 year old, I’m always looking for ways to inspire innovation in her, to do what I can to maximize her future success.
What can parents and educators provide to children of any age to inspire innovation?
Here are 5 building blocks for innovation you can start with (happy to discuss more ways in another post)
- Creativity Provide an environment for children that recognizers creativity. Turn a room into a maker-space with free/cheap resources for self-directed DIY projects that supports children to think, plan, make and share.
- Exploration Children learn by exploring and ‘figuring-out’ the world around them. Allow them to explore new ways of thinking, asking questions, and finding new solutions to real-world problems that are personally meaningful to them.
- Trial and Error Innovation is a process of trial and error so letting children know that taking risks, failing and succeeding are all important learning tools.
- STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) is an important driver of innovation. Strengthen children’s STEM skills by using hands-on and ‘learning-by-doing’ activities that promote learning fundamental STEM concepts.
Research from Tufts University by Dr. Marina Bers shows that through robotics children as young as 4 years old can learn concepts of STEM and develop their problem solving skills.
- Brain activation Innovation often arises from bridging the gap between unrelated concepts to generate new ideas. Activating and challenging different brain areas to solve problems can strengthen building blocks for innovation.
Robotix is inspiring innovation in children by providing hands-on robotics education programs in schools and also creating educational tools that helps children of all ages enhance their problem solving and STEM skills that can be used at home or in schools!
What methods have you found useful in inspiring children to be creative problem solvers and young innovators?
Author : Dr. Deepti Suchindran Founder & CEO Robotix USA. Neuroscience Ph.D. Boston, USA