It's time to #ThinkSTEM!

STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics - and forms a core part of the Curriculum for Excellence.

Although these subjects may sound better suited to a classroom than your living room, but you’ll be amazed at how many of your day-to-day childminding activities involve STEM.

Have you ever looked at objects floating in a water tray, baked cakes with your minded children, built junk models or counted out play money? Yes? Well then, you’ve already touched upon the key elements of STEM without even noticing.

Working alongside the Scottish Schools Education Research Centre (SSERC), SCMA has become a market-leader in developing a range of STEM learning resources designed specifically for childminders in Scotland, including two new courses to add to your Continuing Professional Learning (CPL) and a series of STEM-themed Network Meetings.

READ our #ThinkSTEM Activity Pack

Want to #ThinkSTEM and Learn with SCMA? 

Network Meetings to help you #ThinkSTEM

Whilst we are generating interest about our new #ThinkSTEM courses, SCMA members are also invited to our STEM Network Meetings.  Giving you a flavour of STEM and how it can enhance your childminding practice, our series of STEM Network Meetings will also give you the chance to share ideas with local childminders and find out more about support from SCMA. 

Forfar 28 October 2019
Elgin 16 November 2019
Edinburgh 25 November 2019
Inverurie 2 December 2019

South Lanarkshire 16 March 2020
Inverclyde 18 March 2020
Dumfries and Galloway 21 March 2020 

We have already delivered a series of STEM Network Meetings across Scotland, and we're hoping to have more STEM learning events coming up in 2020. 
For further information and to book a place at our free STEM Network Meetings, please call our Learn with SCMA team on 
01786 445377 

New #ThinkSTEM courses available now! 

SCMA has worked alongside the Scottish Schools Education Research Centre (SSERC) to develop our latest Continuing Professional Learning (CPL) courses, which are now available online via our easy-to-use e-Learning platform or as Interactive Learning. 

Think STEM: An Introduction for Childminders and Exploring Your Senses
Think STEM: Science Inquiry and STEM Outdoors 

Thanks to funding from Education Scotland, SCMA is able to offer a number of free places on our new STEM courses.

Look out for more information and invitations from our Learn with SCMA team, and we'll help you #ThinkSTEM.

STEM Resources and Useful Links

Loose Parts Play Toolkit

Providing practical guidance about loose parts play to those who work with children and young people of all ages – including childminders – and advocating the use of loose parts as an approach to developing play opportunities at home, outdoors and in the community.

This useful resource can be found on Membership Dashboard via the Learning Library.

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NASA Science for Kids

NASA Space Place's mission is to inspire and enrich children’s learning about space and Earth science online through fun games, hands-on activities, informative articles and engaging short videos.

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Scottish Government Online STEM Module

A STEM-based learning package has been developed by the Scottish Government in partnership with the University of the West of Scotland, which provides multi-media resources and activities for those working with children to help develop curiosity in the world around them.

(This link will take you straight to the sign-in page, where you should enter ‘STEM’ in the module search box to enrol for the STEM module.)

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Curriculum for Excellence Science Principles and Practice

Learning through play using the principles of the sciences, children and young people develop their interest in, and understanding of, the living, material and physical world around them. Engaging in a wide range of collaborative investigative tasks, enables them to develop important skills to become more creative, inventive and enterprising in the future.

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Scottish Schools Education Research Centre (SSERC)

Providing support for science and technology education across Scotland.

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Curriculum for Excellence

Scotland’s curriculum – Curriculum for Excellence – helps our children and young people gain the knowledge, skills and attributes needed for life in the 21st century.

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Realising the Ambition: Being Me

Realising the Ambition: Being Me builds upon the original principles of Pre-Birth to Three and Building the Ambition, as this refreshed early years national practice guidance for Scotland presents key information about the characteristics of child development based on research and evidence.

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SSSC Open Badges

SCMA has partnered with the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) to award Accredited Open Badges. These are digital certificates that recognise learning, achievement and success, which encourage reflective learning and improve to practice.

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SCMA Membership Dashboard and Learning Dashboard

For more information about reflective practice and writing reflective statements, there are useful resources and tools on the Membership Dashboard via the Learning Library. Browse our range of downloads, resources and tools – designed and tailored to childminders in Scotland.

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Make Sense

STEM resource from Guide Dogs which examines ‘finding the way through sensory play’ and includes engaging sessions on how the eye works and the benefits that daily exercise, good nutrition and sufficient sleep have on the body and on peoples’ eyesight.

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