A STEM-tacular Summer
Summer was a busy time for BoSTEM and its partners. Hundreds of students spent their time having fun and learning about STEM. For example, students at Digital Ready spent a week coding their own game on micro:bits, while kids at West End House got a visit from Rev. Mariama White-Hammond, Chief of Environment, Energy, and Open space for Boston, to see their ideal neighborhood built out of Legos.
BoSTEM spent a few days with one of our new partners’ summer learning program Square Roots to deliver a series of STEM-tacular maker activities to their students!
On our first day, we taught students about the career of an aeronautical engineer and challenged them to build a paper airplane that flew all the way across their classroom. Through many different designs and a lot of test flights, the student of Square Roots proved that they are ready to be Boston’s next generation of engineers!
For our second day with Square Roots, we taught students about accommodations made for people with disabilities, specifically prosthetic limbs. Students took on the role of a biomedical engineer, making their own movable prosthetic hands from ordinary household items. We gotta hand it to Square Roots: their students would be excellent in biomedicine!
On our third day, students took on the role of a geotechnical engineer, and built structures that could withstand earthquakes by using their knowledge of different materials, geometries, and building methods.
On our last day with the students, they took on the role of a green-focused mechanical engineer by building wind-powered vehicles, that they raced against one another. The kids learned a lot about force, motion, and how axles on vehicles work.
Thank you Square Roots for letting us test out our activities with your educators and students!
You can find our activities listed below. Try them with your children or students and let us know how they went!
Every summer BoSTEM co-hosts an Architecture, Engineering, and Construction themed externship with Boston Public Schools and a few of our committed industry partners: Autodesk, Elkus Manfredi Architects, Nitsch Engineering, and Gilbane Construction. In past years the opportunity was focused on teachers learning about these different industries, and creating a curriculum for their students to spread awareness of these incredible professions.
We did it again this year, but with a twist! We’re proud to have partnered with ACE Mentors this year to include a group of students in the externship, and the experience was incredible. We were joined by the fabulous Councilor Murphy, once a BPS teacher herself, to kick things off and speak to the students and teachers about the importance of filling these jobs in Boston with homegrown talent.
Students and teachers learned about these careers together, and even got to go on a field trip in Cambridge to learn about a few projects that were currently under construction using the methods they learned about.
Students were assigned the task of proposing a way to get more students and families aware and interested in the careers they learned about over the course of the externship. From approachable tiktok videos for kids and community events, our diverse participants blew us away with their ideas and how much they learned. If you would like to view the showcase, click here to watch and follow us on Instagram @uwbostem.
BoSTEM Discussion Activities
BoSTEM is rolling out a series of discussion-based lesson plans centered around the intersection of STEM and DEI. From environmental justice to BIPOC representation in video games, these are perfect if you are looking to help your students see themselves in STEM, develop their STEM identity, and practice critical consciousness along with their peers. If you are interested in using these lessons for your class or program, send us an email firstname.lastname@example.org!
The school year is off to a strong start, and we’re excited to bring another year of STEM fun and learning to our students with you. Mass STEM Week will be from October 17th-22nd this year, and we’re planning all sorts of activities and events.
If you’re a school or afterschool program interested in connecting your students with a STEM company, fill out this form.
If you’re a company looking to connect with a group of students, fill out this form.
And to stay up to date on the events we’ll be hosting, sign up for our newsletter here.
Looking to keep up to date on all things STEM in Boston? Click the links below, or email us at email@example.com.
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