A project of the Afterschool Alliance
health and wellness

STEM

Afterschool programs are a natural space to provide engaging, hands-on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) learning. Show off the exciting opport unities available to your students, or introduce kids and parents to STEM at your event.

BROWSE PAST EXAMPLES

There are so many fun and exciting ways to celebrate STEM—here are a few ideas:

  • Participate in 4-H's National Youth Science Day with a fun computer science activity
  • Feature hands-on science experiments, build robots, or teach principles of chemistry with food science
  • Visit a science center or science museum to explore the wonders of the cosmos or learn about the biology of living things
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Team Up with STEM Partners

There are many stakeholers that are invested in improving K-12 STEM education. You can harness this interest by using Lights On Afterschool as an opportunity to connect with new partners or as way to grow current partners’ engagement and commitment to afterschool.

  • Science centers and museums: These institutions are all about hands-on learning and employ staff with a deep knowledge of science and engineering topics. They are often eager to reach audiences outside the museum walls and look to better serve underserved communities. Identify a potential science center partner. Don’t forget about children’s museums, as many have a strong interest in STEM as well!.
  • STEM professionals: Our communities are full of STEM experts who may relish the opportunity to share their expertise and passion. All kids need positive role models and mentors to help envision themselves as someone who can do STEM, and Lights On is a perfect opportunity to introduce a STEM professional to your kids!
  • Other STEM education partners: You might also consider zoos and aquaria, parks and nature centers, or government agencies as partners for your Lights On event.
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Talking Afterschool STEM with Schools and Families

It’s important to communicate the importance of STEM education and how afterschool uniquely supports STEM learning to both school partners and the families we serve. The Afterschool STEM Hub provides resources during Lights On Afterschool and throughout the year to harness your communication skills as they relate to out-of-school time STEM, so that you can be the most effective advocate possible!

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Throwing a Newsworthy STEM event

If you’re looking for ideas and suggestions for how to talk compellingly about your STEM programs and put together a STEM-themed Lights On Afterschool event, this webinar is for you! We all know that afterschool programs are a great way to get children and youth excited about STEM and should be integral partners in STEM education.

Yet all too frequently parents, community leaders, and policy makers don’t understand how big of an impact that afterschool programs can have on STEM education. Hosting a Lights On Afterschool event presents a unique opportunity to showcase the amazing work that you are doing in the STEM world to your community and to the stakeholders that can make a real difference for your program.

Watch the webinar