BETHESDA, Md. - A group of young educators and mentors in Bethesda is pushing to provide valuable science, technology, engineering and math opportunities to local kids.
The Kid Museum is set up to take what looks like fun and games and turn them into valuable STEM education.
"They are learning something that they want to be learning,” said Kid Museum founder and executive director Cara Lesser. “Parents see this as an incredible resource that is available to their kids. It's a place to come to meet up with other families but for kids to get engaged in just discovering what they can create."
These early lessons about physics, architecture and engineering are especially important to kids who have little to no access to them elsewhere.
"This was really designed to help bridge that gap for girls and for kids who are not traditionally represented in stem fields,” said Lesser.
Museum activities even benefit the staff, who are mostly local high schoolers honing their own skills as STEM teachers and mentors.
"You have a one on one experience working with children and helping them problem solve and that'll definitely help me in the future,” said Kid Museum and Walt Whitman High School junior Mara Parau.
One of the most important features at the museum is its computer programming and coding workshop.
And for those interested in more physical sciences, there are also wood working lessons.
"We had to use a saw to cut wood in half and we had to do math and measure and counting and all these cool science things to figure out how to make it and then we had to attach the two pieces together," said 10-year-old Ahuva Burstyn.
Along with the sciences, the Kid Museum also embraces international education by hosting upcoming cultural programs from nations including Nigeria, Indonesia and Taiwan.