On the 8th November every year, we celebrate National STEM day. But what is it, why is it important and how does it relate to a large technology consultancy?
What is the purpose of STEM/STEAM day?
The day exists in order to encourage young children to engage in the fields of science, technology, engineering, art, and math. A recent study by the Department of Education showed that girls aged 14-16 were less likely to enjoy or consider themselves the best at STEM subjects.
By dedicating time and effort to these subjects in an engaging, practical way for younger children, we can help fight the stigma and stereotypes related to these subjects earlier on in children's lives.
DMW and STEM
We recently ran a 'Family Day' at DMW, with a large focus on STEM-based activities for the children of our employees. These activities were practical, encouraging students to apply their knowledge (and therefore STEM subjects) to real-world problems.
We partnered with London Connected Learning Centre (CLC), an award-winning organisation that helps schools and other organisations use digital technologies to improve learning.
They prepared a range of activities for parents and children alike to take part in.
The first room allowed the children to learn the basics of coding using the Micro:Bit. The Micro:Bit is a tiny programmable computer that is designed to make learning and teaching accessible, easy and fun.
The participants used these Micro:Bits and craft materials to design, programme and build a piece of wearable tech. In this session, we saw the creation of temperature sensors, compasses and pedometers.
In the neighbouring activity room, the focus was on programming. Here, kids could design and programme their own video games using Scratch, an online programming language.
This activity allowed for collaborative and creative working, as well as helping the children understand the type of work that goes into creating the types of technology they enjoy.
By using art supplies and iPads, some of the younger children were able to work together with their family to create a Stop Motion animation. One family re-created their journey into the DMW office that day:
Puppet Pals and Chatterpix
Our final activity was also aimed at our youngest attendees. Here, kids could use apps like Puppet Pals and Chatterpix to bring their drawings to life. They could also use props on the apps and craft their own drawings to create videos.
In true DMW fashion, after the technological work is finished, there is always a focus on play. We took the children to 'All Star Lanes,' where we rewarded our attendees with a fun filled afternoon of bowling, Mario Kart and karaoke, which included many renditions of 'Let it go!'
We are extremely proud of the culture we’ve created at DMW and will continue to reinforce that the DMW family expands further than our immediate employees.