Science Beyond the Classroom

Science is all around us. Although children in Singapore are only formally introduced to the subject in Primary 3, many parents have already seen the benefits of Science and are keen to introduce their children to it at an early age. Science can help to develop a child’s natural curiosity for the world around them, which can prove to be hugely beneficial as they grow older. Below are three main benefits of encouraging your child’s love for Science.

Benefits of Science Education

  1. Develops scientific literacy and better critical thinking skills

Science helps children to develop their analytical and problem-solving skills. It teaches them to analyse large amounts of data and to draw conclusions from them. It also teaches them to think critically through asking questions and when encountering new problems.

2. Helps children to understand how the world works

Science helps children to understand the world around them. It is a very practical subject and its applications can be seen in almost every aspect of everyday life. This makes learning all the more fascinating, and children can gain more confidence about themselves as well when they feel that they are able to comprehend the mysteries of our universe.

3. Encourages children to play a part in human progress

Mankind’s progress has largely been shaped by scientific discoveries and advancements. A strong foundation in Science helps your child to be better prepared to face future challenges, and to solve them too. In doing so, your child can benefit from very real and practical applications of Science.

Avenues for Learning

In 2018, Dr Janil Puthucheary, Senior Minister of State in the Ministry of Communications and Information and the Ministry of Education, stated that Singapore remains staunchly pro-science, and actively supports the pursuit of scientific excellence. This can be seen in the government’s push for applied learning in schools (such as encouraging industry leaders to be involved in working with schools) so that students can learn about Science outside the classroom.

Indeed, aside from the government’s efforts, there are a myriad of learning resources that parents can tap on to teach their child Science. In school, students are already exposed to Science competitions such as the annual Science Olympiads and the National Science Challenge. The Singapore Primary Science Olympiad, for instance, is an annual competition that aims to provide an avenue for young science enthusiasts to test their skills and generate greater passion for the subject.

There are a variety of science-related learning resources aside from school textbooks dedicated to delivering quality education for students. Examples include STEAM magazines for both pre-school and primary school children. STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics, and it aims to take an integrated approach to learning, to encourage innovation and creative thinking. You can find out more about STEAM magazines here.

Beyond the classroom, there are many places in Singapore where children can experience Science first hand, to help nurture their creative and curious minds while encouraging exploration in everyday life. For children who like nature and Biology, parents can bring them to any of Singapore’s beaches or hiking trails. For those interested in Physics, parents can bring them to visit the Art Science Museum or the Helix Bridge near Marina Bay Sands. The Singapore Science Centre offers a variety of science-related programmes for children as well.

If your child expresses a keen interest in Science from an early age, you do not have to wait until they are in Primary 3 to start introducing them to the subject! From experimenting with Science at home to taking them for outdoor trips, there are many ways to cultivate and nurture their curiosity from young.