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STEM Challenge #1

May 11th, 2020
Categories: Educational Connections, Kids, News, STEAM Adventures
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Nature Bingo + Nature Craft

We’re going to offer bi-weekly STEM challenges on this page. The first one: Nature Bingo & Craft!

Almost all of us are spending a good deal more time at home these days.  But we don’t have to be stuck indoors!  May is a beautiful month to be outdoors in Northern Illinois.  This week’s STEM challenge will help you get outdoors and have some fun!

Print out this Nature Bingo Card, or copy it onto a sheet of paper.  This card was created by the Museum of Science and Industry, and we like how it’s filled with very down-to-earth (pun intended) things.  Find a puddle, an ant hill, or even animal poop! Collect things on your walk—stones, sticks, flowers—to use in a nature craft.

There are so many nature craft ideas online.  One fun list is found at Arty Crafty Kids (  A few favorite low cost, easy ideas:

You can do the Nature Bingo, the Nature Craft, or both. After you do, please share with us!  Go to the Facebook post about the Nature Bingo/Nature Craft STEM challenge and share a picture of your bingo card and/or your craft! We’d love to see what you’ve been up to!  On May 18th, we’ll pick one bingo card or craft we think is especially awesome and highlight it on our social media.

Continue your STEM fun with FREE library e-books that you can check out from home!

  • The Secret Lives of Backyard Bugs (Overdrive): This guide will help you know more about bugs living right where we are!  It’s filled with a good amount of facts for an elementary-aged child (or eager insect-loving preschooler). There are lots of pictures, and the “Easy Comparison Guides” at the back of the book are especially useful if you find an egg under a leaf and wonder what it might be.
  • Lifetime (Overdrive): Did you know a woodpecker will drive 30 roosting holes in its life? Or a giant swallowtail butterfly will visit 900 flowers? This book is great for elementary students practicing counting, as each page actually has the correct number in its illustrations, from 200 giraffe spots to 50 kangaroo joeys.
  • How Plants Grow (Hoopla): An easy reader (smaller amount of text—good for younger elementary readers or a preschooler to listen to) with pictures of the life cycle of a plant.  A nice, simple introduction to how all the plants you’ll find doing this challenge grow!
  • Dentro De Una Planta (Hoopla): A fun, Spanish-language introduction to plants. It covers where plants can live, what plants need, and the plant life-cycle.
  • Q & A about Plants (Hoopla): Why are flowers so colorful? How old is that tree? How do plants get food? This book answers all of these questions and more. It’s text-heavy, so it’s best for older elementary readers (or very strong younger elementary readers).

Please direct all questions about this activity to Laura at [email protected].