Science Kits for STREAM Educators

I have recently discovered a great not-so-new resource for teachers and librarians - Biology in a Box! This program, now in it's 25th year, was created by University of Tennessee/Knoxville professor Dr. Susan Riechert to help science teachers in the Knox County, Tennessee, schools who were lacking a strong science background, or adequate resources to provide strong

Food for Bears in Outdoor Classroom

For the second time in as many years, I had the opportunity to participate in the Outdoor Classroom Trip for a local school district. This event has happened annually at the end of the school year for 11 years, and is run by the science teacher at Kathryn Winn Primary School, which is part of

Tree-mendous Mini Camp a tremendous success!

Taking advantage of connections to the county parks department, spring weather, and spring break, we tried a new program idea this spring. A Tree-mendous Mini Camp was held on two days in a local county park; we did a variety of tree-related activities, learning games, reading, crafting, and more. For two and a half hours

Poly- What? Learning the language of 3D Geometry

    Shapes, shapes, and more shapes.  Circle, triangle, square, rectangle - it all starts of easy enough.  Then it get a bit more complicated when you move from two dimensional to three dimensional - sphere, cylinder, pyramid, cube, prism.  Then, before you know it, your tongue is in a knot, and you're totally confused.

Pumpkins! (with STEMs!)

Happy October! Like the rest of the known (well, at least here in the Midwest!) world, you CAN bring pumpkins into your programming! But there are ways to do this which include many STEM concepts as well as fun! There are many great fiction titles about pumpkins, some of which actually follow the life cycle

Engineering programs? As simple as playing with blocks!

Providing programs that fit in the Engineering aspect of STEAM can seem a bit daunting. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition (c.2011) defines engineering as: “The application of scientific and mathematical principles to practical ends such as the design, manufacture, and operation of efficient and economical structures, machines, processes, and systems.”

New Life for an Ancient Tool – Making and Using Abaci With Elementary Age Kids

              What can you do with a group of kids, corrogated cardboard, a lot of beads, pipe cleaners, and some masking or decorative duct tape?  Make abaci, of course!                         With a little bit of preliminary work, this is a craft program

Southeastern Forests and Climate Change

Project Learning Tree (PLT) https://www.plt.org/ has been discussed in previous posts. There are a number of secondary modules (for grades 9-12) available to enhance and expand the PLT curricula. Modules include Biodiversity, Biotechnology, GreenSchools! Investigations, Focus on Forests, Forests of the World, Places We Live, Focus on Risk, Municipal Solid Waste, and Southeastern Forests and Climate

Move Over iPads, Kindles in the Spotlight

  Over this past summer my department added a regular Gadget Lab to our Summer Reading Club programming.  I had the opportunity to offer Kindle Fire HDs and iPad Minis for my school-aged participants to learn to use and play with.  Initially the program was offered every other week, but an advertising mistake gave me

Seven days of STEM: A week’s worth of Environmental Ed: Day 4. Trees, please!

  Trees. I grew up climbing them, reading in and under them, swinging on ropes hung from them, even planting them. Not everyone is so lucky. Even if your library does not include green space and trees, there are fun and interesting ways to share trees with your younger patrons.     As always, I start

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