Let’s Learn: S.T.E.M.
If you’ve paid any attention to what kids are being taught in school these days, you should be well aware of S.T.E.M. programs, which focus on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Although not new at all, the idea of bolstering our focus in these areas is intended to give kids a leg up on 21st century skills and help them develop their inquisitive nature and curiosity about areas that may be slightly neglected as folks have taken a greater interest in someday becoming reality TV stars or DJs. This DVD compiles episodes of popular Nickelodeon cartoons that focus on S.T.E.M. concepts such as Dora the Explorer and Blue’s Clues. The cartoons aren’t groundbreaking, but they take popular characters your kids trust and adore and make the pursuit of knowledge and exploration seem fun. The characters are diverse and balanced with a great pool of female role models who really dig learning about S.T.E.M.—helping to address the deficit of women in these fields. I think if you really want to teach your kids about these ideas, you should be out in the world doing it—climbing trees and looking at bugs and stuff—but when it is time for the TV babysitter to step up to the plate so you can wash some dishes, this DVD is definitely going to be better than letting your kids watch Sir Mix-A-Lot videos on Youtube. –Ben Trentelman