Converting festive crafts into scientific research

Winter crafts can be a valuable source of STEM learning, teaching pupils critical thinking and scientific skills while also having fun. Inspired by the Rubbish Science initiative, Fiona Aubrey-Smith explains

As we move towards Diwali, Christmas and other winter festivals, classrooms across the country increasingly draw upon craft and design projects as part of both celebration and creativity.

But alongside their place in RE, art, design technology and pastoral provision, these crafts can also be a valuable source of STEM learning.

For example, a great question to pose to young people might be: “Do Christmas decorations on a bird feeder make it more or less attractive to birds, or would it make no difference?”

This encourages learners in our classrooms to think more forensically about the design and construction of their bird feeder, the nature of materials used, the relationship between nature and science, the forming and testing of hypotheses, and the dissemination of outcomes

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