Teaching children about math, science, and physics isn’t easy. It often helps to have real world examples that attract children’s attention and then use their interest to spark a learning experience. Good teachers use this technique all the time, but even more learning goes on at home so it’s important for parents to remember this too.
One of the best ways to engage children is to show them something colossal: a jumbo jet lifting off the runway, a cruise ship leaving port, or if you live by a construction site, the heavy machinery involved in constructing a new building. If the construction site is not on dry, stable ground but instead rests on a marsh or swamp, the construction company is most likely using a very special technique that makes a wonderful teaching tool for parents.
On swampy ground, construction companies are likely to use a series of interlocking wooden mats that distribute the weight of their heavy equipment – making it easy for huge trucks, cranes, and even oil rigs to rest on the bog mats. Ask your child how the mats help to keep the big machines out of the marsh and why it would be difficult to work in this location without the aid of the wooden supports. This allows the young one to see the effects of physics first-hand.
If you are mathematically inclined, you can set up a simple problem to determine how strong the mats have to be to hold the machinery out of the bog. You can also take the opportunity to show your kids how swamp environments differ from dry forest ecosystems and the difficulties for people working in both.
If your child is really interested in building their own construction sites, you can show them Bog mats for sale from leading brands like Quality Mat Company, and tell them to start saving up their allowance!