At MakerKids, we make screen time educational and fun with our wide variety of STEM programs. From robotics to coding and even Minecraft, kids are learning to make the most out of their screen time.
Since the pandemic hit in 2020, learning and many activities were forced to go virtual if they wanted to survive. This has brought an entirely new element, allowing kids to take classes at MakerKids in a virtual setting. Children can meet peers from all around the world now that many classes are virtual. They are still getting top-notch instruction at MakerKids as they learn from mentors through their screens.
Virtual Learning at MakerKids
At MakerKids, we have transformed our robotics, coding, and Minecraft classes into a virtual platform. This has allowed us to still offer our award-winning classes to children through the pandemic. As children began to feel isolated and alone, our classes were able to bring them together in a virtual setting.
Through our classes, children can work on their projects and ask questions to our experienced mentors in real-time. With a mentor-to-student ratio of 1:5, children can get the attention they need to complete their projects. They can also offer input to their peers to help make their projects better. Since our classes are divided according to age group, kids are interacting with other kids who are on their level. This promotes teamwork and collaboration.
During our virtual classes, children also pick up skills like learning how to be persistent and developing problem-solving. These are skills they can develop and work on in class but will help them their entire lives. This is an added benefit to classes at MakerKids. Combined with the STEM skills they are learning, children are getting maximum benefits from virtual classes.
Getting Your Input
Research has firmly established the benefits of technology-based learning for young people’s reasoning and thinking abilities, and preliminary evidence also suggests that some digital media activities may improve children’s mental health. Past literature has shown that computational thinking can provide a host of useful skills and psychological benefits. The problem is, there isn’t much of it found in the basic curriculum. After-school programs like MakerKids as well as camps often try to bridge this gap so that children can get these benefits.
Research also suggests that working together can help to acquire coding skills. One case study done by Chase and Okie found that peer-based, collaborative environments were linked to higher project completion rates and more elaborate projects when compared to individual work. The study’s findings help to provide some indication that group learning has great benefits.
We want to learn more about the benefits these types of classes can produce. We believe that programs like those offered at MakerKids are good for mental health, socioemotional, and behavioral functioning. This is where you come in.
We are inviting you to participate in research that is being conducted in a partnership between the University of Waterloo and MakerKids. We are collecting data on how kids are doing with the types of programs offered at MakerKids. The results will help parents, educators, and clinicians understand how to use technology to improve children’s mental health and promote positive attitudes towards using digital media.
When you participate in the survey, you will be eligible to win $500 worth of MakerKids programs like after-school programs, camps, and even parties! We would love it if you could participate in this study because we firmly believe that it will improve our knowledge of children’s socioemotional, and physical development as it pertains to digital media education.
You can learn more about our survey and fill out our consent form here. If you have any questions about the project, please feel free to contact [email protected]