Bustamante studies early childhood science education, Head Start, approaches to learning, and community-based intervention. Begolli is a lecturer at California State Universities Long Beach and Dominguez Hills. His research interests include experimental psychology, educational psychology, cognitive science, teacher education, primary education, and mathematics education.
Science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) focused language and interactions build a foundation for later STEM learning. This study examines the ability of the life-size math and science board game “Parkopolis” to foster STEM language and interaction in young children and their families. This study is part of a larger initiative called Playful Learning Landscapes that aims to create playful learning opportunities for children and families in the places they naturally go. Observational results from 562 families suggest that caregivers and children in Parkopolis demonstrated greater STEM language, engagement, interaction, and physical activity compared to a STEM focused traditional children’s museum exhibit. Implications and next steps are discussed in regards to maximizing the number of families that can benefit from Parkopolis’ playful STEM learning opportunities.