STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math) Challenges are amazing learning activities! They tend to feel like play, but they engage your Lil’s problem solving skills like crazy. They require your Lil’ to be innovative and creative. They learn about trial and error and their failures give you the opportunity to teach persistence and trying again, and their successes build their confidence! STEM challenges are AWESOME learning opportunities.
Today we are going to challenge our Lil’s to build a barn out of craft sticks.
Lil’ Explorers will be building a 2D barn. grave your FREE template HERE!
Lil’ Creators will be building a 3D barn. grave your FREE template HERE!

Lil’ Explorers Focus Skills

Geometry

  • Identify common 2-dimensional shapes such as squares, rectangles, triangles, heart, star, circle, semi-circle, oval, diamond
  • Use common shapes to create complex objects (triangle on top of a square makes a house)

Engineering

  • Construct models to represent their imagination and objects in the world
  • Build using a variety of materials in both conventional and unconventional ways
  • Use tools with appropriate safety and purpose
  • Engage in problem solving activities

Lil’ Creators Focus Skills

Geometry

  • Identify common 2-dimensional shapes such as squares, rectangles, triangles, heart, star, circle, semi-circle, oval, diamond
  • Use common shapes to create complex objects (triangle on top of a square makes a house)
  • Identify common 3-dimensional shapes such as cube, sphere, cylinder, cone, pyramid

Engineering

  • Construct models to represent their imagination and objects in the world
  • Build using a variety of materials in both conventional and unconventional ways
  • Use tools with appropriate safety and purpose
  • Engage in problem solving activities

Required Materials

*Affiliate Link

Popsicle Stick Barn Template - Explorers

Popsicle Stick Barn Template - Creators

*Popsicle Sticks

*Hot Glue Gun

*Hot Glue

Step #1
Print out our popsicle stick barn template.
Step #2
Invite your Lil’ to build a barn using popsicle sticks and hot glue. (ONLY adults should use the hot glue! Use this as an opportunity for your Lil’ to work on their language skills by having them direct you in placing the glue.)
Step #3
Use the template as a guide to show your Lil’ what the end product should look like.
Step #4

Talk with your Lil’ about what shapes they see; square(s) and triangle(s). Our more advanced Creators maybe able to identify the cube, but it will benefit them to recognize that the cube is made up of squares. This will allow them build more easily.

Teacher Tip

Rea asked if we could paint our barn red once we were done, so you can extend the activity by painting it and glueing it on a piece of paper with some grass and a few farm animal stickers.

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