Informal Science

STEM After School Program

Wed Apr 03, 2013 10:42 AM

I am going to be starting a STEM after school program at my school to help increase STEM education at my school. There are a lot of ideas out there as to what to do for this kind of program. I was wondering what any of you have done before and what worked well? Please let me know, thank you, Thomas Gruber

Thomas Gruber
Thomas Gruber
250 Activity Points

Wed Apr 03, 2013 6:39 PM

I am currently mentoring two after school science programs. One is an Underwater Robotics club - we will compete in April through the Shedd Aquarium, Chicago, IL and MATE: http://www.marinetech.org/ We have a sponsorship through the Shedd for materials and content support for the mentors. In our club, students are required to complete an application to demonstrate a willingness to learn about ROVs and the club runs from September until after competition. I would also recommend looking into Sea Perch: http://www.seaperch.org/index although I have not worked within that specific program.

The second club is a general science club. We recently found a "green" challenge competition for them to complete at KidWind: http://learn.kidwind.org/ This competition will be held at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago in May. The science club also gets to "play around" with and compete among themselves using Lego MindStorms robots. This year they also entered the ExploraVision competition for the first time.

Hope this information helps. There a lot of really great ideas on how to engage students in STEM. Good luck!

Susanne Hokkanen
Susanne Hokkanen
79030 Activity Points

Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:38 PM

Thomas:
What grade level are you interested in?
The following are places to look for help:
http://www.afterschoolalliance.org/STEM.cfm
http://www.emergingedtech.com/2010/02/connecting-a-million-m...-programs/
www.emergingedtech.com/2010/02/connecting-a-million-minds-to-after-school-stem-programs/
http://afterschoolscience.org/pdf/member_publications/Linkin...aution.pdf
These readings and website should be of help. Good luck, you are doing a good thing.
Adah'

Adah Stock
Adah Stock
101470 Activity Points

Sun Apr 14, 2013 4:50 PM

I am especially interested in middle school, specifically 6th grade. Thank you for the great web resources.

Thomas Gruber
Thomas Gruber
250 Activity Points

Tue Sep 12, 2017 1:25 PM

When I was in the 7th grade my class made rockets and launched them outside the school. It was so much fun because we all worked together as a class but each of us had an individual rocket that we built, decorated, and tested. It was definitely one of my more memorable science projects.

Emma Sarcar
Emma Sarcar
240 Activity Points

Wed Apr 17, 2013 6:14 PM

I would look at KidzScience developed by the Lawrence Hall of Science. They have implementation videos and you can purchase one kit at a time and they will last for several sessions. Go to http://www.devstu.org/afterschool-kidzscience for more information.

Jim McDonald
Jim McDonald
3435 Activity Points

Wed Apr 24, 2013 5:44 PM

I would also suggest that NASA Explorer School curriculum. This link should send you to the registration page. http://www.nasa.gov/offices/education/programs/national/nes2/home/index.html

If you want a "taste" of one or two of their lesson ideas, there are webseminars - live and archived - you can watch, which will provide guidance on how to implement the lessons/activities. Here is a link to register for upcoming webseminars: http://learningcenter.nsta.org/products/webseminars.aspx You may need to look through the description to find the webseminars specific to the Explorer School program, but they are worth it. Archived NASA webseminars can be found here: http://learningcenter.nsta.org/products/web_seminar_archive_sponsor.aspx

Hope this information helps.

Susanne Hokkanen
Susanne Hokkanen
79030 Activity Points

Sun May 05, 2013 10:14 PM

I would like to second the www.seaperch.org . It really kick started our STEM program at our school and brought in community interest when we launched our ROV in a local lake. I love the materials and more importantly so do my kids.

Brandy Whitney
Brandy Whitney
405 Activity Points

Sat May 11, 2013 10:05 PM

When we design programs, we usually take a look at http://www.ngcproject.org/. We are trying desperately to get girls involved in STEM

Shannon Hudson
Shannon Hudson
2395 Activity Points

Sun May 12, 2013 9:05 PM

Options I am using is model rocketry and robotics with Lego Mindstorms. There is education material out there for both and can work in both Junior High and High school.

Stephen Pederson
Stephen Pederson
760 Activity Points

Mon May 20, 2013 11:59 AM

I am a CTE educator and continue to see how STEM helps out the basic courses by providing good education plans that incorporate practice of math or science in those classes, and then benefit the basic courses according to NCLB requirements.

Tom Ebling

Thomas Ebling
Thomas Ebling
1085 Activity Points

Mon May 20, 2013 8:58 PM

Shannon, you may wish to read the posts in the STEM for Girls Thread that is in this STEM forum. It contains many resourceful comments and aids.
http://learningcenter.nsta.org/discuss/default.aspx?tid=V124i3Rjo8o_E

patty

Patricia Rourke
Patricia Rourke
45890 Activity Points

Wed May 22, 2013 7:59 PM

There are a couple of NSTA books I have used to find activities to use in our middle school Science nights and after school programs. Many of the activities are adaptable for class or within a program.

Integrating Engineering and Science in Your Classroom, http://www.nsta.org/store/product_detail.aspx?id=10.2505/9781936959419

Everyday Engineering : Putting the E in STEM Teaching and Learning, http://www.nsta.org/store/product_detail.aspx?id=10.2505/9781936137190

I would also check out the thread Patty gave you the link to, there are lots of great ideas.

Sandy Gady
Sandy Gady
42980 Activity Points

Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:43 PM

I agree that KidzScience developed by the Lawrence Hall of Science is an awesome resource. They have implementation videos and you can purchase one kit at a time and they will last for several sessions. Go to http://www.devstu.org/afterschool-kidzscience for more information.

Cayla Cielencki
Cayla Cielencki
450 Activity Points

Tue Aug 06, 2013 10:31 AM

We just did a STEM Camp through Discovery Education that was a great success. We used the curriculum on the DE website under camps, WATER. The kids were totally engaged and parents were extemely pleased and complimentary of our undertaking. DE has designed these camps for after school STEM programs. Contact me at kstanek@davidson.k12.nc.us

Keith Stanek
Keith Stanek
1005 Activity Points

Tue Aug 06, 2013 11:11 AM

You can get some ideas from the Maker Camp, a virtual summer camp for teens that is partially sponsored by Google. They have a couple of weeks left in this week's session. There is an archive of daily projects from previous weeks. A group I worked with a couple of weeks ago in a summer academy used a few of the project ideas with our students.

http://makezine.com/maker-camp/

Stephen Menninger
Stephen Menninger
810 Activity Points

Tue Apr 08, 2014 7:29 PM

I am a Hpuston area STEM specialist, I recommend that you create an alignment for the year and build units.

Carmen Cruz
Carmen Cruz
2125 Activity Points

Wed Oct 07, 2015 10:55 AM

Hi Thomas. I encourage you to check out the YouTube channel I have created for free science demonstrations for every idea that young learners should know. It is called FunScienceDemos. The videos are common core aligned and cover a variety of topics from Earth/Space science to Physical Science to Engineering! These demonstrations are easy to recreate. In the coming year we will be adding supplemental material in the form of additional readings, questions, and worksheets. Please check it out and subscribe!
Hope this was helpful,
Dr. George Mehler Ed.D.,
Temple University

George Mehler
George Mehler
725 Activity Points

Fri Sep 02, 2016 1:12 PM

Wow! What a fabulous idea and great way to bring STEM to your community. Thank you for all of the replies to the post, everything has been encouraging and great ideas are swirling in my head. I am ready to put some into action!!

Jessica Hadley
Jessica Hadley
655 Activity Points

Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:25 AM

I have been given funds for an after-school stem club. Thanks for the links to resources. This program is for grades 4 and 5. Any more recommendations would be welcome. Thanks.

Eric Roth
Eric Roth
3345 Activity Points

Mon Aug 14, 2017 11:30 PM

I Co-Directed a STEM CAMP over the summer so here is are some ideas you may
use to engage students in your club.
1) Have students do Science experiments
2) Invite local STEM professionals to visit and talk about their careers
3) See if local Museums have traveling exhibits with can visit your after-school program
4) See if local colleges can come a share their STEM related research
5) Get STEM related activities from Science Museum websites
6) Have STEM club enter an NSTA affiliated Science Competition
7) Make time for Brain Games like Master Mind, Chess ect,
8) Engage kids in discussions on what they can do to solve real world STEM
problems in the NEWS


LeRoy Attles
LeRoy Attles
56470 Activity Points

Wed Sep 27, 2017 3:35 PM

I love the idea of an after school "independent study" type workshop in the STEM area. I am a preservice teacher interested in working with K-2 students and would love to set up something similar for those ages when I get my first job. It would probably have to have a little more structure considering the ages and abilities will be more dependent, but I think it's so important to start students off in STEM young and foster a curiosity and love for it right away.

Anyone here have any resources for me regarding STEM in the younger grades, more specifically for after school programs like this one?
Also, I'm sure there are plenty of grants out there for this sort of thing, but I'd appreciate being pointed in the right direction!

Molly Lembezeder
Molly Lembezeder
3130 Activity Points

Thu Sep 28, 2017 4:40 PM

Hi Molly,

I found an article about an after-school club that discussed different pollutants and then changed some behaviors to try to solve some of the issue of pollution. This club in particular was for older elementary students, but do you think you may be able to adapt to a younger audience?

http://common.nsta.org/resource/default.aspx?id=10.2505%2f4%2fsc07_044_09_35

What other kinds of activities are you interested in trying with an after-school program?
-Megan

Megan Doty
Megan Doty
5322 Activity Points

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