New Opportunities: September 21, 2021

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This week: FREE or stipend related trainings with our partners: Kenan Fellows, Smithsonian, Vulcan, ASU, NCCSM, and Work in Burke!!

A Cross-Curricular Exploration of Food and the Environment From the Mountains to the Coast

The Kenan Fellows Program for Teacher Leadership is thrilled to partner with the Environmental Protection Agency and Durham Public Schools to offer an exciting Professional Development opportunity for 25 K-12 educators. Thanks to a generous grant from the Merck Foundation, the Kenan Fellows Program is offering 3 virtual sessions this year during Early Release Days focusing on food, environmental justice, and related issues from the mountains to the coast, culminating in a trip to the EPA and a free overnight trip to the NC Coastal Federation next summer. Each virtual session is facilitated by Kenan Fellows Alumni, and chosen educators will receive a $100 stipend upon completion for their involvement.

Virtual Session #1 (slated for October 28th, 2020): Talk with various organizations and partners to learn about Durham and it’s historical connection with food, as well as some organizations that are helping to provide healthy options for everyone.

Virtual Session #2 (slated for April 28th, 2021): Meet with industry partners and organizations in Western North Carolina to see what the foothills and mountains of North Carolina offer in the world of agriculture to the benefit of our state’s economy.

Virtual Session #3 (TBD sometime in late July to early August 2021): This session will be combined with a field trip to the coast to see how the NC Coastal Federation utilizes aquaculture to support local businesses and the environment.

Each virtual session will be immediately followed by an opportunity to reflect and connect with the other chosen educators, and there will be an introductory session on Early Release day 10/7/2020 and a brainstorming work session on Early Release day 2/24/2021.

A virtual or in-person tour of the EPA and all of their resources available to educators is included and will happen in early summer 2021.

Register HERE!

Back to School: Engaging Students in Transdisciplinary Learning through Food!

As schools across the globe see students and teachers returning to the classroom or undertaking distance learning, the Smithsonian Science Education Center is supporting educators to engage students in exciting, transdisciplinary learning that can be done in or out of the classroom.

The Smithsonian Science for Global Goals module, Food! How do we ensure good nutrition for all? Supports young people to investigate issues of food and nutritional security in their own communities, and in communities across the globe. This module brings together science and engineering education with social studies, health and civics to engage students in mapping food access points in their own communities, analyzing food and nutritional guidelines from around the world, exploring recipes and ingredients, and engineering better food storage containers, among other activities.

Over the months of September and October, the Smithsonian Science Education Center will host three webinars to provide educators with support to use the Food! How do we ensure good nutrition for all? module in their own classrooms or distance learning contexts.

Register Here!

Work in Burke: Resources!

The following resources can be accessed by all districts to provide students with opportunities to explore regional careers!

Career videos!

Career Exploration by type!

Summer Ventures & Governor’s School Webinar

Are you wondering what academic enrichment opportunities you might line up for next summer? Do you know a great student who would benefit from a summer enrichment program but you are not sure what to recommend? Join us in this informational webinar to learn more about North Carolina’s two signature programs offered to high school students, Governor’s School and Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics.

Webinar Opportunity: Transformational Summer Programs for High School Students: Summer Ventures and Governor’s School

Tuesday, September 22, 2020 from 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM EDT 

Students, Families, Teachers and School Counselors,

Register here:

New Opportunities: September 14, 2020

STEM Showcase Videos

Bringing together over 1000 videos from the STEM for All Showcases!

Expeditions in Education

 You can do “at home”  (A Virtual Make-It-Take-It)
Register Today
Teachers are facing the challenge of teaching science “from a distance”. Join us for three sessions to see 75 things that can be made by children at home to help them learn science concepts. These learning aides are made from items commonly found at the home or grocery store. Members of the North Carolina Science Teachers Association (NCSTA) will be presenting these ideas via “Zoom” sessions.                  
When: Thursdays, October 1st, 15th and 29th         
 from 4:30 until 6:00 p.m.

Presenters: Laura Lowder, Pfeiffer University 
                    Brad Rhew, Winston-Salem/Forsyth County               
       Manley Midgett, Meredith College

Topics addressed include:  weather, electricity, sound, the Solar System, inertia, force & motion, sink or float, properties of matter, and gravity.

FREE for NCSTA Members

$30 for Non-members (complimentary membership included)
One Registration covers all three sessions.
Credit Card Payments Only.
Register Today
A Zoom link will be sent to those who register on the day of the session(s).Contact Manley Midgett at 919-218-7917 or [email protected]

Teaching K-12 Science and Engineering During A Crisis!

Toshiba Grants

Grants For Grades 6 – 12

  • Do you teach in a middle and high school classroom?
  • Do you have an innovative idea for improving STEM (Science, technology, engineering and math) learning in your classroom?
  • Is your idea project based learning with measurable outcomes?
  • What do you need to make learning STEM subjects fun for your students?

Sixth to 12th grade teachers are invited to apply on-line for a Toshiba America Foundation grant of up to $5,000 and more than $5,000 to help bring an innovative project into their own classroom.

With a Toshiba America Foundation grant, sixth to 12th grade teachers can bring their best new teaching ideas to life.

Typical Toshiba America Foundation Grant Schedule:

Grant typeApplication received byDecision byFunds sent by
K-5 Less than $1K10/111/1512/15
6-12 less than $5K3/14/155/15
6-12 greater than $5K5/17/18/15

I Am A Scientist: Resources

New Opportunities: September 7, 2020

Mark your calendar and plan to join us September 15, 1:30-3:00 PM ET, as we discuss STEM Teacher Preparation.  We will be joined by teacher faculty with extensive experience and new ideas in preparing tomorrow’s STEM teachers and increasing student diversity in STEM agency and pursuits. The event will be broadcast live here.  You can submit questions in advance and during the event here. Please see the attached invitation for more details and feel free to forward to other interested parties. If this was forwarded to you and you are interested in receiving similar invitations and the Department of Education’s STEM Newsletter, you can subscribe at Curtis
Robert Noyce/Ellen Lettvin STEM Education Fellow
Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development
U.S. Department of Education
Sign Up for ED newsletters, including STEM, here.  200915 STEM Teacher Prep Invite.pdfUpdate your subscriptions, modify your password or email address, or stop subscriptions at any time on your Subscriber Preferences Page. You will need to use your email address to log in. If you have questions or problems with the subscription service, please contact

This service is provided to you at no charge by U.S. Department of Education. This email was sent to [email protected] by U.S. Department of Education · 400 Maryland Ave · Washington DC 20202 · 800-USA-LEARN

In the wake of this new era of education, distance learning and the challenges it brings to teaching requires that educators take a hard look at developing pedagogy that will provide all students online learning opportunities that are accessible and equitable. Join us virtually and hear from top Science Educators in North Carolina sharing the ways and means to remote learning in a virtual classroom and addressing diversity and equity during distance learning.‍ Fall Webinar Series – Session 1September 21, 2020 5:30 – 7 pm

Remote Learning, Strengths/Weaknesses, and Strategies for Success

FeaturingDr. Jamie Lathan, Dean of Distance Education and Extended Programs at the North Carolina School of Science and Math  Dr. Lathan is the Dean of Distance Education and Extended Programs at NCSSM, where he supervises and leads Distance Education faculty by supporting and modeling innovative pedagogy and technology integration. He also helps to ensure the academic success of NCSSM distance education students. 
And ‍Candace Chambers,
Teacher Development Specialist at the North Carolina School of Science and Math In addition to teaching, Candace has served as Interdisciplinary Coordinator for Distance Education and in recent years she has taken on numerous projects such as developing new curriculum, piloting new instructional technologies in the classroom, supporting school-wide professional growth initiatives, and scaffolding new advising opportunities for students in distance education.
Future Webinars
October 13: Equity & Inclusion in the Distance Learning Environment
November 4: Remote Learning Tools for a Virtual Science Classroom
December 3: Culturally Relevant Pedagogy  
FREE to NCSLA Members but you must register to attend.  $40 for Nonmembers.  Includes all four webinars plus one-year membership in NCSLA. 

Sponsored by Mary Dolciani Fund of the Mathematics Education Trust and the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

Contact:Mathematics Education Trust
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics
1906 Association Dr.
Reston, VA 20191-1502

Phone: 703.620.9840; 800.235.7566 (Toll-free)
Email: [email protected] (For questions)
Description:The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics’ (NCTM) Teacher Professional Development Grants are provided to improve the competence of in the teaching of mathematics of one or more classroom teachers in grades 6 through 8. While this grant does not fund the purchase of technology, proposals including professional development involving the use of technology to enhance student learning are encouraged. Any acquisition of equipment must support the proposed plan, but not be the primary focus of the grant.

Eligible applicants are one or more current mathematics teachers per school who spend at least half of the school day teaching mathematics in grades 6 through 8, have three or more years of teaching experience in grades 6 through 8, and are a full individual or e-member of NCTM, or teach in a school with an NCTM prekindergarten through grade 8 school membership. Past recipients of this grant are not eligible to reapply.

Applicants must provide five copies (one original and four copies) of the complete application in a single packet to mail to the contact address by the deadline. Faxed applications are not accepted.
Eligibility:Public, Charter, Private
Award(s):Grants up to $3,000 are awarded.
Deadline(s):Applications are due November 1, 2020.
Focus:Professional Development, Technology Ed
Grade Level(s):Adult
Content Area(s):Mathematics

Sponsored by Foundation for Rural Service

Contact:Foundation for Rural Service
4121 Wilson Blvd. Ste. 1000
Arlington, VA 22203
Phone: 703.351.2026
Email: [email protected]
Description:The Foundation for Rural Service provides a variety of programs ranging from youth-based initiatives and educational materials to consumer awareness and rural economic development. The foundation aims to improve educational achievement in rural communities across the country with projects that will have a long-lasting effect on the community. Grants are concentrated in four major areas: business and economic development, community development, education, and telecommunications.

Educational grants support technology in the classroom (such as computers and smart boards), curriculum development, extracurricular activities, and distance learning programs. The foundation recently supported funding for Chromebooks for elementary school students, virtual reality equipment for high school students, and classroom computers for underserved students. Priority is given to projects that will be fully funded by the grant maximum, or those that have 75 percent of the project costs funded.

Eligible applicants are nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations and schools. Applications must be submitted online.
Eligibility:Public, Private, Charter, Other (including homeschool, 501 (c)(3) organizations)
Award(s):Awards range from $250 to $5,000.
Deadline(s):Applications are due September 30, 2020.
Focus:After School, General Education, Professional Development, Rural, Technology, Technology Ed
Grade Level(s):PreK, K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, Adult
21st Century
Themes and Skills:
Communication, Digital Literacy, Financial, Entrepreneurial, Economic, Business Literacy, Information Literacy, Innovation

The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs (NC CAP) is a statewide Network dedicated to increasing access to high-quality afterschool and expanded learning programs for all children and youth in North Carolina, helping them to succeed in and out of school. Our work includes research and best practices in the afterschool and expanded learning environment; convening key stakeholders (statewide and regional); advocating for policies to support afterschool and expanded learning; and professional development and technical support for afterschool programs. NC CAP is currently seeking dynamic and dedicated individuals to join our advisory board. If selected, advisory board members will serve a 2-year term with a mid-term review. 

If you are one or more of the following, we are interested in you:
-Leaders within out-of-school time programs or partnering agencies focused on our priority areas – youth development, STEM, literacy, nutrition & physical activity, equity & access – interested in implementing impactful statewide programs and initiatives.
– Energetic and entrepreneurial business people, who are not already overextended with other commitments, eager to put their enthusiasm for changing the world to work for our state’s children.
-Community leaders and philanthropists willing to engage their peers to ensure access to high-quality programs for all youth.
-Astute governmental or state agency advocates who can assist in navigating the political landscape of policy development, funding and legislation.
-Scholars/academics who want to put their expertise in youth development, STEM, literacy, nutrition & physical activity, equity & access, to work for youth statewide.

If you hold yourself to high expectations, then you’ll find service on our advisory board very rewarding. We are looking for passionate individuals who will:
-Attend four (4) quarterly (in-person or virtual) advisory board meetings –annually Actively engage in NC CAP events and communications
-Support planning of events including the annual Synergy Conference
-Advocate for the Network’s mission and vision locally and statewide

Interested candidates can complete the application form here. The deadline to apply is September 16, 2020 at 5pm. Applications will be reviewed by a selection committee. Selected individuals will be notified mid-late September for an interview. 

New Opportunities: August 31, 2020

New NC Computer Science Standards Adopted

It’s not too late! You can still benefit from the REAL (Remote Education and Learning) conference held on August 6th. Go to to login and access materials and recordings of the sessions. Sessions were on a variety of topics such as Bitmoji Interactive Classrooms, Digital Tools to Support Distance Learning, Virtual STEAM: Hands-On Learning at Home, Canvas 101, and multiple Google Classroom sessions. We hope you will find lots of tools to add to your remote learning toolbox.

Free Live Online and On-Demand Workshops for K-12 Educators

IBM AI Education is an immersive, online professional learning suite of FREE live and on-demand institutes, webinars taken to the next level, crafted by and for educators. The nine institutes will guide educators through AI’s foundational concepts and K-12 classroom connections, with topics including introduction to AI, natural language processing, ethics, robotics, and more. Educators can choose to view just one institute or experience multiple sessions, and by attending all nine, they have the opportunity to earn the IBM AI Education badge. All attendees will walk away with an exposure to AI and ideas on how to incorporate AI fundamentals into their curriculum through our example activities during each session as well as an interactive toolkit of strategies that attendees can access after each institute.

Live Institutes – This series of nine live online institutes about AI is free for K-12 teachers, encouraging educators to actively interact and share content with one another. Each institute lasts 90-minutes and covers a different topic of AI, including an introduction to AI, modern-day applications, ethics of AI, equity-centered Design Thinking, diversity and inclusion, employability skills for students, and more.

View or Register for Live Institutes

On-Demand Institutes – These self-paced institutes are the same interactive content and 90-minute length as our live version with the added benefits of pausing, doing one lesson at a time, and picking up right where you left off! On-demand

institutes are a great way to catch up on prior topics or review content after attending a live event.

View or Register for On-Demand Institutes

Girls Who Code (GWC)

GWC now offers materials for hybrid or virtual clubs. If starting a new club, sign up as STEM West affiliate for additional resources!


eCYBERMISSION is a free, web-based STEM competition for students in grades six through nine that promotes self-discovery and enables all students to recognize the real-life applications of STEM. Students participating in eCYBERMISSION cultivate their interests in STEM and work in virtual teams where they are challenged to explore how STEM works in their world, while working together to better their communities using scientific inquiry and engineering design methods. Students compete in teams of three or four for State, Regional and National Awards. Registration is now open.

eCYBERMISSION offers a mini-grant to support teachers and program leaders as you implement the competition into your curriculum! Funding can be used by schools, teachers and program leaders for supplies and professional development. If your mini-grant application is submitted by our early, September 16, 2020 deadline, accepted applications will be dispersed by early October, 2020. The final deadline for applications is October 14, 2020. Please contact [email protected] for more information. Apply here

Hands-On Virtual Energy Workshops
Calling all K-12 science, CTE, & math teachers!
We invite you to attend a sponsored free energy education virtual workshop! This is not your average Zoom professional development!
Since March, NEED has delivered tried-and-true, engaging virtual workshops for educators. We may be virtual, but it’s still hands-on and 2020 celebrates our 40th year of putting energy into education.
K-12 science teachersCTE teachersMath teachers
It’s FREE!Receive a hands-on energy kit for your classroom.Curriculum materials aligned to state standards.Substitute reimbursement for weekday workshops or stipend for attending a weekend workshop.Engaging activities, networking, distance learning tips and tricks shared by our NEED facilitators.Access to free STEM and energy-themed curriculum and resources!
Register to Attend!
View NEED’s Event Calendar here.
We’ve got virtual energy workshops happening in SeptemberOctoberNovember, and December.
*Seats fill quickly, so don’t delay*Please share with your colleagues, too!
View dates, agenda, & details
I really thought I was tired of having virtual classes and meetings BUT this was really worth it. I was glad to be a part of this virtual experience– if they were all this fun and informative, I wouldn’t get in trouble for not being fully engaged!! 
I’ve attended five online workshops this summer and this was the best. Very relevant to the curriculum and lots of activities that can be used online and in class. THANK YOU!!!I have to be honest I was not looking forward to the virtual workshop, but it was positive and motivating to me as a teacher. 

New Opportunities (7!): August 24, 2020

PBL Works Series:

Here’s a little something we’ve been working on… a new podcast series: The Project. It’s all about PBL, of course. And we made it with you in mind.

With special guests, like Ron Berger and Carlos Moreno, and PBL teachers telling their stories from the trenches, we’re diving deep into the power, the potential, the pitfalls, and the possibilities of Project Based Learning – to help you, your students, and your colleagues get the most out of PBL. 

The first 6 episodes of The Project are now live! Listen on our website, or subscribe with your favorite podcast app.

Listen & subscribe to The Project

iTunes  |  Stitcher  |  TuneIn  |  Spotify  

Get a quick preview here…

Don’t send a professional to do an 8th grader’s job

What the heck is PBL?

PBL Bloopers: stories from the PBL trenches

This Teachable Moment

The education all students deserve: PBL
and racial equity

The Breaking Bias Project

Pre-service Teacher Scholarship

The NC Space Grant 2020-21 STEM Pre-Service Teacher Education Scholarship is now open for applications.  Your students studying to become K-12 STEM-subject teachers are eligible to apply for this competitive program, which will provide them with a scholarship of $3,500, training from NASA education specialists, an expenses-paid trip to NASA Langley Research Center and other opportunities. 

Undergraduate education majors can learn more and apply here:  Applications are due Oct. 5 and recommendation letters are due Oct. 7, 2020.

This is a wonderful opportunity for pre-service teachers to learn how to bring exciting NASA science into their future classrooms, to inspire the next generation of explorers!  

The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM) STEM Scholars Program involves partnerships between NCSSM and interested North Carolina public schools for a two-year cohort program offering Computer Science and math-enriched STEM elective courses for 9th and 10th graders. These courses are designed to better prepare students in small rural schools, particularly students who are historically underrepresented in STEM fields, for the many opportunities they will have in 11th and 12th grade, from AP and IB coursework in their home school to enrollment in NCSSM or Career and College Promise courses. With increased exposure to the foundational skills required to work effectively in STEM, these students will be well positioned for success as future global leaders.

Students participating in the STEM Scholars program are selected by their local schools. Each school participating in the program is committed to enrolling at least 3 students in the same section during the student’s freshman year. These students will follow up taking a 2nd course in their sophomore year.

NCSSM partners with schools across the state to connect students to a new world of resources. Interested in learning more?Visit For more information, contact Camilla Brothers, Outreach and Partnership Manager, by email at [email protected] or by phone at 919-416-2658.

Register Now! VIRTUAL SciREN Triangle and Educator Open House

Would you like the opportunity to talk directly to local scientists and learn about their research first hand? Do you want access to free, virtual lesson plans and resources you can immediately use in your classrooms? Want to avoid traffic and not have to move off your couch?! This night is perfect for you!  Join us this year for our VIRTUAL SciREN Triangle and Educator Open House on Sept. 24, 2020 from 6:30-8:00pm

This free, live, online event will feature local scientists, Museum educators, and partner organizations showcasing their lesson plans and resources/opportunities in a relaxed environment. Learn about new virtual programs and field trips, outreach programs, and professional development opportunities that are available during this time of social distancing. Through a partnership with SciREN (Scientific Research and Education Network), meet local scientists ready to distribute curriculum-centered lessons based on their current research! This is an excellent way to rejuvenate teaching methods, integrate relevant and real science into student learning, and reach out into the community. Registered educators will be sent Zoom links for each of the scientists and partner organizations that will be available for live chats (drop-in style) from 6:30-8:30pm. You will also receive access to digital lesson plans. Please consider joining us from the comfort of your own home! 

Register now:

U.S. Department of Education Launches Space Mission Challenge for High School Students  

CTE Mission: CubeSat Challenge seeks to inspire, prepare students for a future in aerospace

Building on the Administration-wide commitment to expand student interest in the booming science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields, the U.S. Department of Education launched CTE Mission: CubeSat, a national challenge to inspire students to build technical skills for careers in space and beyond. High school students from across the country are invited to design and build CubeSat (cube satellite) prototypes, or satellites that aid in space research, bringing space missions out of the clouds and into the classroom. To learn more, schools can join a virtual information session on September 1, 2020.

“This is such an exciting way to rethink education and get students engaged in hands-on learning in the growing aerospace and technology fields,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. “I look forward to seeing the innovative prototypes students develop and hope this challenge inspires our next generation of American space explorers.”

Investors predict that space will be the next trillion-dollar industry, and as missions in space continue to expand, so do the career opportunities. This multi-phase challenge offers high school students across the United States the chance to build CubeSat prototypes while learning creative, collaborative, and technical skills for 21st century careers.

Schools interested in entering CTE Mission: CubeSat should form a team and submit a mission proposal by 5:59 p.m. ET, on Oct. 16, 2020 — no in-person collaboration or prior experience with CubeSats is required. The online submission form asks for school information, a team profile, a project proposal, and anticipated learning outcomes. Curated educational resources are available to students and teachers online in the CTE Mission: CubeSat resource hub

Up to five finalists will be selected to receive prizes and participate in Phase 2, which runs from January to May 2021. Finalists will have access to expert mentorship and additional virtual resources as they build CubeSat prototypes and plan flight events to launch their prototypes. The Department understands that due to current conditions, schools will need flexibility to safely collaborate when designing and building prototypes during the challenge. The Department looks forward to the creative solutions in the mission proposals it receives as challenge entries.

Each finalist will receive an equal share of the $25,000 cash prize pool, as well as satellite development, hardware, and software kits. Challenge sponsors include Arduino, Blue Origin, Chevron, EnduroSat, LEGO Education,, MIT Media Lab, and XinaBox.

“Developing a CubeSat prototype is an opportunity for students to learn competitive skills and explore a wide range of careers in space — or their own communities,” said Assistant Secretary for Career, Technical, and Adult Education Scott Stump. “Through CTE Mission: CubeSat, we aim to bring students new learning opportunities to build valuable technical skills for in-demand and rewarding careers.”

About Ed Prizes

CTE Mission: CubeSat is part of Ed Prizes, a series of prize competitions to develop new products and services to both increase access to, and expand the capacity of, career and technical education. The Department has awarded $1.7 million in prizes through three previous challenges. Learn more at


P.S. Join us August 25, 2020, 1:30-3:00pm ET for the next STEM Webinar on Cybersecurity Education.  Live streamed here.

STEM Research Grants Application Now Open!

Dear Fair Director,

Since many schools will not meet in person this year, we know that many students will not have access to lab equipment at school to complete their projects. We have modified out STEM Research Grants program and moved up the timeline to get take-home lab equipment to teachers as quickly as possible. We hope they will loan this equipment out to students to complete the projects. One hundred teachers will be selected to receive $1,000 in take-home kits.

Please pass this message on to teachers connected to your fair and encourage them to apply.

Thank you for all you do to support students in science fair, especially in these unusual times.

Learn more details about the program here:

Corporate StrategiesDesigned by The Science House of NC State University, Digital Development: Tackling Remote Learning in STEM Education is an affordable, virtual, and four session (3:30 – 5:30 each day) professional development training to empower teachers, schools and districts to leverage online STEM resources to create authentic and flexible remote learning experiences.
What does the program cover?✔ Planning and Harnessing Quality Lesson Plans✔ Citizen Science In (or Out) of the Classroom✔ Interactive Virtual Labs and Simulations✔ Big Data and Education Data Mining✔ Bias in Resources
Program Details:
Grade Level(s): K-12 Teachers
Date(s): Monday, August 31 – Thursday, September 3, 2020 (Daily sessions 3:30 – 5:30 pm
Location: Online using Zoom Video Conferencing
Cost: $100 for the week
Description: This professional development will be delivered online using Zoom video conferencing. Participants are expected to participate in the live daily sessions all four days (Monday – Thursday afternoons). In addition to the four live sessions (8 hours of content) an additional offline assignment requiring two hours of work will be included, bringing the total hours up to 10 and offering a certificate of completion for 1.0 units of digital learning and content. Please note the sessions will be recorded for asynchronous viewing only if needed.
Contact(s): Scott Ragan ([email protected])
Application Deadline: This professional development opportunity is limited to 30 participants. Registration will remain open until all spots are filled, at which point new applicants will be added to a waiting list. Registration is not confirmed until the course fee has been paid (online using a credit card or mailing a check to campus). Registrations are accepted using REPORTER – the NCSU registration center for this type of activity. If you have not used REPORTER before you will need to create a free personal login at the link below.

New Opportunities: August 17, 2020

National Environmental Education Foundation Resources:

Click here to see EE resources provided!

US Dept. of Ed Grant:

The grant is open to rural LEAs and high schools to develop a tech program. See more information here. Deadline is October 8th, 2020.

GIS and Agriculture:

Short videos about the intersection between GIS and Agriculture. The videos show the application of technology in this field (pun intended)! Also offered are some mapping activities.

New Opportunities: August 10, 2020

Duke Energy Science Night
Activity Kits Now Available for Elementary Schools Our wildly popular K-5 program is back, with added flexibility for the upcoming school year!

Our team has modified the kits so they can be used in classrooms, sent home as activity packets, or–COVID depending–used as part of a traditional science night in 2021.

Click to learn more.

Thanks to support from the Duke Energy Foundation, teachers can apply to receive one of 150 of these great activity kits are available at no cost to the school. The deadline to apply for a subsidized kit is August 21.

NEW THIS YEAR, due to overwhelming demand, schools can purchase kits. The deadline to preorder is September 4.

Explora las estrellas

Thanks to an Ideas That Matter grant from Sappi, Morehead Planetarium and Science Center was able to produce and distribute 750 amazing bilingual astronomy activity kits to families around the state. This program was such a success that we’ve posted digital copies of the activities, along with Spanish-language instructional videos online.

Click to learn more.

Thank You, North Carolina! Check out the 2020 NCSciFest Final Report for some great highlights from this past April.

Check out Morehead Planetarium & Science Center’s virtual offerings that include educational skywatching sessions, science cafes, planetarium show premieres and more. Interested in finding great STEM opportunities beyond the NCSciFest window? Visit the NC STEM Calendar to find STEM events year-round, and sign up for their newsletter for updates.Kelvin the spokesbotBe sure to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

Use the hashtag #ncscifest to share your moments!

In-person or Virtual Ice-breakers for the start of a new school year!

New Opportunities: August 3, 2020

K-12 Energy Units From NEED: National Energy Education Development

Find multiple FREE resources for energy education HERE!

Indexed Internet Resources for Educators

Find Indexed internet resources HERE!

SSEC Introductory Activity for Moodle/Virtual Class Introduction

Introduce Yourself: Identity Map

Thanks to the Smithsonian Science Education Center for this activity that was used during training this summer. As many of you will be teaching virtually this fall, this activity may assist in kicking off your course! This may also be modified to align with an academic topic.

To build your map:

1. Gather objects from around your home that represent you, your personality, and your values. This may include objects that represent your:

  • Role in your family (mother, brother, cousin, daughter, etc.)
  • Career or education experience
  • Interests, hobbies, or things you like to do for fun
  • Age, gender, nationality, family background/origin
  • Personality traits (loud, funny, sad, kind)
  • Physical traits (tall, black hair, blue eyes, wears glasses etc.)
  • Anything else you can think of!

2. Gather a few additional objects that can represent your thoughts, feelings, concerns and dreams about what education may look like after COVID-19.3. Assemble your objects in a way that tells a story about you. Some ideas include:

  • Chronologically – a timeline of your story
  • A wheel with spokes – each object radiating out from a center
  • Mini collection – grouping items together by location, type, etc.
  • Any other way that suits you!

To share your map:

1. Provide guidance for your audience and don’t forget to include your thoughts, feelings, concerns, and dreams about what education may look like beyond COVID-19. Some ideas include:

  • Take a photo, and write up a short paragraph describing how your objects tell your story. 
  • Take a video (no more than 1 minute) of your map and narrate your story.

2. Post what you have created by adding a discussion topic below. Put your name, affiliation, and where you’re from in the subject line to share with your fellow participants. If you’re part of a team, considering making one discussion topic for your team with each member adding their map as a reply.
3. View other people’s physical identity maps, and comment on them as you are able throughout the week. 
We hope you enjoy telling your story through your physical identity map, and learning about your peers from around the globe!

Additional FREE Resources from SSEC!

Girls Who Code (GWC) Partners with STEM West

We are partnering with Girls Who Code to bring free computer science opportunities to girls across our community and would love for your school, library, or youth organization to host a Club! Girls Who Code Clubs are FREE and flexible computer science programs for 3rd-12th grade students to learn how to make a positive impact on the world through computer science.

When you sign up to start an in-person or virtual Club, you’ll gain access to the following — all for FREE.

  • Online Training & Ongoing Support
  • Customizable Meeting Guides
  • 120+ Hours of Plug & Play, Project-based Curriculum
  • Exclusive Virtual Events

Plus, NO coding experience is required to start a Girls Who Code Club!

Apply here today! Be sure to indicate your partnership affiliation with STEM West on your Clubs Application in order to receive partnership benefits. You can reach out to [email protected] with any questions.

NEW RESOURCE: Code at Home!

Girls Who Code has released FREE Girls Who Code at Home activities for 3rd-12th grade students. We know that parents, educators, and girls are looking for support and connection during these challenging times. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Girls Who Code is making CS educational activities available for download free of charge, to anyone who wants to access them. Each activity includes a feature of a woman in tech who pioneered innovative technology. Learn coding from the comfort of your home!

To help you prepare for another school year and navigate some of the uncertainties, we’ve created new resources and no-cost, creative activities you can use to engage your students and continue to build the skills and confidence they need to change the world – today and tomorrow.

FIRST® @ Home is a 12-session curriculum series designed by FIRST Education experts to support distance learning and bring authentic learning opportunities to students in a variety of learning environments.

If you’re looking for hands-on distance learning curriculum or fun activities students will love, FIRST @ Home can be combined with FIRST® LEGO® League Explore Class Pack and School Pack for a more robust experience using our new scope and sequence options.

Each lesson features a different aspect of STEM learning and can help build students’ coding, engineering, and holistic skills using materials found at home.  

Each lesson includes the following resources to guide your experience:

  • Lesson Plan: for parents, educators, and caregivers to plan and facilitate each activity.
  • Design Brief: a student guide written in an engineering design process format that assists students through the steps in solving the problem and reinforces design thinking.

In the activities designed for students ages 6-10, they’ll explore the FIRST Core Values; create an invention using simple machines; work as a game designer to make an inclusive solution to a common children’s game; and more!

Download Lessons Here!

Plasma Games Access: Free Gaming for 8th Gr/HS Chem & Phy. Sc!

This chemistry gaming platform has been funded by the NC General Assembly for all NC teachers! Sign up for the training and access here!

This is NOT a quiz platform but uses chemistry and use of the periodic table to defeat foes! Students also learn about different STEM careers of all the characters.

Meet Christina Koch: 1st Female Spacewalk

Prepare to be inspired to reach your full potential as North Carolina State University graduate Christina Koch receives the 2020 Global ATHENA Leadership Award and shares her journey to becoming an astronaut and part of history in the first all-female spacewalk. Join us on August 11th, 12pm EST

New Opportunities: July 20, 2020

PD Opportunity – Culturally Responsive Pedagogy in STEM Education: Virtual Summit

Please join us for a CESTEM sponsored virtual summit: Culturally Responsive Pedagogy in STEM Education: Professional Development for 21st Century Educational Success.

Who: K-12 educators

When: 10 AM – 12 PM on July 21, 22, 24, 27 & 28 (attending all sessions is suggested, but not required)

Cost: FREE, but registration is required (CEU credits are available for registered participants)


The virtual summit will begin with an inspirational message from Dr. Calvin Mackie. Award-winning mentor, inventor, internationally renowned Speaker, Author, and STEM Entrepreneur, Dr. Calvin Mackie, will deliver a message on the importance of cultural competence in mentoring.

Teachers will have opportunities to participate in hands-on interactive sessions with polling questions and chat sessions to reflect on their instructional practice in relationship to CRP. Participants will hear from noted scholars teaching at research-intensive universities on how implementing culturally responsive teaching strategies allows the continuity of intergenerational teaching amongst African American educators (Faison, 2016).

Participants will learn how STEM teachers use student-driven models that embed Ladson-Billings’ three main components of academic success, cultural competence, and critical consciousness into their instructional practice to promote STEM for all students (Gilchrist, 2016). K12 teachers will hear other educators describe their efforts to rethink culturally responsive pedagogy, as suggested by Ladson-Billings, to address culture in STEM education for increased inclusivity.      

For more information, please visit the registration page:

We look forward to your participation!

CESTEM Blocked

Schedule announced for Bridging the Gap 2020

We’re excited to announce the schedule for this year’s virtual Bridging the Gap STEM education conference! It features more than 70 presentations and more than 75 speakers who hail from across North Carolina and beyond.

All corners of the STEM education community are represented — from K-12 education, higher education, industry, government or other STEM groups such as museums and educational initiatives.

What you can expect from the virtual Bridging the Gap conference this fall:

  • Reduced registration fees to account for the new format (for example, you won’t have meals provided so your new registration fee reflects this);
  • Sessions that strengthen your virtual teaching experience during the current COVID-19 pandemic;
  • Sessions that inspire and support you during one of the most stressful times in teaching this country has ever seen;
  • COVID and infectious disease updates for those curious about the state-of-the-science behind the headlines;
  • The same remarkable keynotes that you’ve grown accustomed to hearing at Bridging the Gap;
  • Hands-on sessions where you see first-hand how to take lesson plans and activities immediately back to your classrooms – either in person or virtually;
  • Small group discussions about important topics in STEM education;
  • Networking sessions for connecting with your colleagues in the Bridging the Gap community; and
  • Time with exhibitors, our popular Outreach Expo and information about funding opportunities to support K-16 STEM education.

The last day for “early bird” registration is Monday, August 31. Register now before rates increase significantly. For every three registrations purchased as part of a single order, you receive an additional registration for free. If your order is eligible, we will email you with instructions on how to redeem your free registration. (Offer not valid on presenter discounted registrations or student registrations.) 

Register to Attend →

Before September 1: Prices start at $192 ($100 for students)
On/after September 1: Prices start at $355 ($100 for students)


In a year when many educational conferences and conventions have been cancelled, the same great Bridging the Gap conference experience will be provided virtually to North Carolina’s STEM community, allowing exhibitors an opportunity to reach current and potential customers, network with STEM education decision-makers and strengthen their STEM education profile.

More information about the exhibitor packages for the new, virtual Bridging the Gap 2020 conference will be shared shortly.  

About the conference

Bridging the Gap is a statewide conference that unites K-12 education, higher education, industry, government and other STEM groups to work toward the common goal of strengthening K-16 STEM education in North Carolina.

Since 2012, more than 3,270 STEM stakeholders from North Carolina and beyond have come together at Bridging the Gap to share ideas and resources.

When: October 27-28, 2020

What Women in STEM Look Like!

The If/Then Collection:

Are you trying to inspire others with authentic and relatable images of women in STEM?


We are pleased to offer the IF/THEN® Collection, a digital asset library of women STEM innovators, for educational and other noncommercial use. Search the Full Collection

New Learning Opportunities: July 13, 2020

Bright Ideas Grants: Due August 15th

For more than 25 yearsNorth Carolina’s electric cooperatives have helped light up learning in K-12 classrooms statewide through the Bright Ideas education grant program. Tar Heel teachers with innovative ideas for creative learning projects can submit an online application April through September of each year.

More than 600 grants are awarded annually by our state’s electric cooperatives for projects that improve classroom instruction and utilize innovative teaching methods. Applications are accepted from teachers in a variety of disciplines including music, art, history, reading, science, technology, math and engineering, just to name a few, and educators may apply as individuals or as a team.

To be considered for a grant, the proposed project must meet the following criteria:

  • Be reviewed and approved by your principal or supervisor
  • Directly involve and provide ongoing benefits to students
  • Seek to achieve clearly defined goals and learning objectives
  • Use innovative and creative teaching methods
  • Feature measurable results that can be evaluated upon completion

Funding cannot be used for salaries or professional development.

Apply on line HERE!

NC Space Grant Announces New Program for NC Teachers

NC Space Grant is launching the NC Space Education Ambassadors (NCSEA) program to help prepare pre-college students for STEM careers and to equip teacher leaders to inspire students. The goal of the NCSEA program is to build a statewide network of master teachers who deliver NASA educational content to their local students, schools and communities.

Each year, up to 10 in-service K-12 classroom educators will be selected from eight education districts across the state. NCSEA Ambassadorships will be competitively awarded and require an application, resume, letters of support/recommendation from school administrators, and essays regarding STEM knowledge and passion, especially in engaging underrepresented groups in activities.

The deadline to apply is July 31, 2020. Letters of support are due August 2. 

Ambassadorship Activities

NC Space Grant will partner with NASA Education Specialists from NASA Langley Research Center and other NASA field centers to provide each NCSEA cohort with intensive professional development in current NASA Next Gen STEM education themes including: Small Steps to Giant Leaps, Commercial Crew Program and Moon to Mars. 

After their initial training, NCSEAs will work as a cohort over the next academic year to: (1) align existing materials with the NC Standard Course of Study, (2) develop lesson plans and activities to supplement the Next Gen STEM themes, and (3) disseminate information via two outreach events or workshops to other educators in their schools, districts or state. 

Financial Support

NC Space Education Ambassadors will receive a $1,200 stipend upon successful completion of all required activities. NC Space Grant will cover all expenses for professional development at NASA Langley Research Center.


Applicants must:

· Be currently employed as a K-12 classroom teacher or STEM coordinator at any public or private school in the State of North Carolina

· Have a minimum of three years teaching experience

· Be a U.S. citizen

How to Apply

Find more information and apply on our website here


As always, if you do not wish to hear about NC Space Grant funding opportunities, please email me and I’ll remove you from my list. Thank you!

Lee Cannon

Communications Specialist 

Water Resources Research Institute & North Carolina Space Grant

North Carolina Sea Grant at NC State University

Campus Box 8605, Raleigh, NC 27695-8605

(919) 515-2456  ||

Jobi B. Cook

Associate Director, NASA/NC Space Grant

NC State University

850 Main Campus Drive, Suite 105

NCSU Campus Box 7515

Raleigh, NC  27695-7515

Phone: 919-515-5933

[email protected]