STEM Career Spotlight

STEM Career Inspiration: Doctors

Learn more about what a doctor is and what they do, the steps to become a doctor, and fun doctor-related activities for kids!

At Blocks Rock!, we’re continuing our series highlighting awesome STEM careers that inspire kids! For our sixth spotlight, we’re choosing a job that is important and relevant this year - doctors.

Read this article to learn more about what a doctor is and what they do, the steps to become a doctor, and fun doctor-related activities for kids! At the end, you’ll find our printable STEM poster, perfect for a child’s bedroom wall or a classroom.

What Is a Doctor?

A doctor is someone who helps diagnose and treat people experiencing sickness, disease, injuries, or pain.

There are many different types of doctors, so many types it would be hard to list them all here! There are some doctors people see regularly, and other types that specialize in certain areas of the body.

Here are a few different types of doctors, as described on WebMD:

Family Physicians

They care for the whole family, including children, adults, and the elderly. They do routine checkups and screening tests, give you flu and immunization shots, and manage other ongoing medical conditions.

Dentists

Dentists specialize in oral health, and help people take care of their teeth!

Pediatricians

They care for children from birth to young adulthood.

Ophthalmologists

You call them eye doctors. They can prescribe glasses or contact lenses and diagnose and treat diseases.

Dermatologists

Have problems with your skin, hair, nails? Do you have moles, scars, acne, or skin allergies? Dermatologists can help.

Infectious Disease Specialists

They diagnose and treat infections in any part of your body. Some of them specialize in preventive medicine or travel medicine.

A Doctor’s Job Duties

A doctor has many responsibilities and works with a team of people. Depending on which kind of doctor you’re seeing, their responsibilities will look different.

Here’s what Kids Britannica says about doctors’ job duties in general:

“There are many parts to a doctor’s job. Doctors first need to identify what is making a person sick. Then they decide on a treatment. They also predict when the patient will feel better. In addition, doctors try to prevent illnesses. When treating patients, doctors work with many other people, including nurses, therapists, and physician assistants.”

Doctors can work in many different places, including public health organizations, teaching facilities, private practices, group practices and hospitals. (Career Explorer)

How to Become a Doctor

It takes many years of study to become a doctor. It can be a long process, but that is what makes doctors so good at their jobs - and it sure is an important job!

Here are some of the steps to becoming a doctor:

  • Work hard to get good grades in school and focus on sciences like biology and chemistry. If your high school provides any medical classes, be sure to try them out!
  • Choose and attend a college that offers a pre-med program, where you can focus on classes like biology, chemistry, and physics. A Bachelor’s Degree typically lasts 4 years.
  • Work hard in college to receive good grades, so that you can get into medical school to study medicine. Medical School typically lasts 3-4 years.
  • After medical school, most graduates proceed to a residency program, where they are trained by experienced doctors. Residency programs typically last 3-7 years.
  • Finally, after completion of a residency program, residents must pass a test to get a license to practice medicine.

There are many other jobs in the field of medicine, too! Jobs like nurses, therapists, and physician assistants!

Fun Activities for Young Aspiring Doctors

So what can a parent do for a young, aspiring doctor? We’ve put together a list of fun activities that encourage a love of science, people, and problem solving and also helps build skills that are critical for a future in STEM learning!

  • Get a Stethoscope and Set Up a Pretend Clinic in Your Living Room So That Your Child Can “Play Doctor”
  • Read Books with Your Child About Doctors and Other Careers in the Medical Field. Here’s a list of 15 children’s books about doctors.
  • Learn about the different tools the doctors use like thermometers, bandages, syringes, ear scopes, scalpels, and more.
  • Take Classes in Science! Study.com has a great science course for elementary students.
  • Take a Class at Khan Academy - Khan Academy offers many different science and math courses to help students develop interest in these subjects!
  • Play Blocks Rock! - Since Blocks Rock! Builds spatial reasoning, a skill critical for STEM learning, it’s the perfect game to help develop a solid STEM base!
  • Practice Problem Solving Skills - Part of being a doctor is learning how to problem solve, and PBS Kids offers a variety of fun problem solving games!

Get Inspired With Our Aspiring Doctor Printable!

This one-page printable is a fun summary of this blog post and has a checklist of the activities for young aspiring doctors. Download it here.

As always, if you’re looking to build skills critical for STEM careers, remember to play Blocks Rock!

If you want to explore other STEM careers, check out these idea from our blog:

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