STEM Scouts Continues to Bridge Achievement Gap with 2nd year of Experiential Learning Programs
Wednesday, May 4, 2016
STEM Scouts is a national pilot program focused on fun ways for girls and boys to learn more about science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Educational content, developed and vetted by STEM educators, is designed to be immersive and to inspire teamwork, problem solving and independent thinking. Girls and Boys in 3rd-12th grade develop leadership and communication skills while learning about opportunities in careers that are important to our future economy. Students participate in weekly 90 minute lab experiments covering a variety of disciplines such as; physics, chemistry, robotics, forensic science and programming. The labs introduce STEM professionals and STEM innovators, creating an atmosphere conducive to inspiration, creativity and personal growth. With the help of local STEM organizations, STEM Scouts is capable of reaching underprivileged youth across the state of Colorado. Without the financial and professional support of Denver STEM companies, these students would never have the opportunity to participate otherwise.
While charter schools, private schools and STEM schools across Colorado are flourishing in STEM education, many Title 1 and low-income schools are being left behind. Many schools don't have enough funding to support experiential learning or the means to develop a curriculum to support that type of learning. The gap between affluent schools and low income schools is becoming greater each year. STEM Scouts provides the answer for the students at Title 1 schools offering a diverse and equal program which supports Hispanic speaking labs and all girls labs. STEM Scouts provides the training, curriculum, supplies, STEP (short term experienced professional) volunteers, technical equipment and support that is necessary for schools to launch a STEM lab.
STEM Scouts is currently working with several Title 1, low-income schools. Launching labs in Title 1 schools requires professional financial support. The cost is $200 per student for an entire school year. The cost covers all lab expenses, equipment, curriculum and lab notebooks. The total cost for lab manager fees and insurance coverage is $200.
An organization can choose to sponsor an entire lab, generally consisting of 15 students, for $3150, insuring the lab for the entirety of the calendar school year. An organization may also elect to cover scholarships for a certain amount of students or saturate several labs in an untapped area of the organization’s choosing. If an organization chooses to sponsor 3 labs, the organization is then considered a STEM Scout “Institute”, ie; “Creative Lab TV STEM Scouts Institute”.
We need you! Low income students don’t have the chance to participate in advanced experiential learning without support from STEM and community business leaders and organizations.
In gratitude for sponsorship, STEM Scouts provides business advertising exposure and logo branding on our web site, our lab coats, and STEM Scouts literature. We also expose your company to `a `STEM Scouts network that could lend themselves potential clients/customers for your organization. We are so grateful for your help, and we enjoy returning generosity and support with generosity and support.
STEM Professional exposure is crucial for STEM Scouts-- introducing a professional and engaging the students with her/him is incredibly enriching for our program. Introducing participating STEM Scouts to individuals at your organization would be a vital and potentially life-changing experience for our young scientists, technologists, engineers, and mathematicians.
There are several ways to get involved. Labs run at schools across the Denver area Monday-Thursday for 90 minute periods. Start times vary for each school. Labs cover a variety of modules (4-6 weeks) surveying a range of STEM disciplines: physics, forensic science, robotics, chemistry; etc. We cover a wide spectrum of STEM topics within each experiment pertaining to the subject matter of the module in operation.
Volunteers may commit to a “lab manger” or “associate lab manager” position.
These positions are the most time intensive and require the most preparation and responsibility. Fulfilling these roles is deeply rewarding for the volunteer but are an undertaking. We provide all training for these positions. A volunteer in this position will feel well-prepared and confident in executing their duties as managers.
Lab managers and associate lab managers lead EVERY 90 minute lab, once weekly, for the duration of a school year. Both positions require training, weekly preparation; as well as organizing and running the lab. Managers will have access to every experiment and all resources and materials are provided. You DO NOT have to be STEM professional to be a LM or ALM. The curriculum is easy to follow and can be conducted by any responsible adult.
If a volunteer does not have the time, energy or resources to take on a lab manager or associate lab manager position, a participant may elect to lead a single experiment day during the year OR opt to participate each week for the entirety of a 4-6 week module.
As previously stated, the curriculum, experiment and support of adult lab manager and associate lab managers are provided. Volunteer positions in the short term roles would not be responsible for participating as a “guest star”, facilitating an experiment or experience after introducing themselves and sharing their profession/passion.
We want volunteers to introduce themselves, their career, their history, and; most importantly, their PASSION. The volunteers then run the established experiment with the kids, perhaps providing insight of real-life examples, professionally and personally. You will have full access to the format and experiment operation prior to your volunteer date. You will have adult resources and a structured format to work with.
We facilitate labs for grade levels 3-5, 6-8, and high school. The volunteer chooses the module, lab and school he or she would like to participate in.
This is truly a fun experience for the volunteer and an inspirational and revelatory experience for our youth.
SCHOOLS CURRENTLY SERVING
Everitt Middle, Wheat Ridge-Tuesday 6-730
Skinner Middle, Highlands- Wednesday 3-430
Kepner Middle(vastly Hispanic and Spanish speaking), Lakewood- Wednesday 3-430
Fairview Elementary-Highlands Monday 4-530
Mile High Adventist Academy- Highlands Ranch Monday 1:45-3:30
Mission Viejo Elementary (all girls lab)- Tuesday 3:20- 5
Silver State Christian School Elementary and Middle Morrison- Thursday 3:30-5
ST. Elizabeth’s Middle School Metro Denver- Thursday 3:30-5
Columbine Elementary School Metro Denver- Monday 3:30-5
GALS (Girls Athletic Leadership School) High School Metro Denver- Thursday 3:30-5