LigerBots to Host Eastern Mass. State FLL Championship at NNHS, Dec. 16

The LigerBots will host the Eastern Massachusetts FLL State Championship, a FIRST LEGO League robotics competition for 300 Massachusetts students in Grades 4-8 on Saturday, December 16, 9AM-3PM, at Newton North HS. It’s free and open to the public. The theme of this year’s competition is Hydro Dynamics (see video).  Forty-eight teams earned the right to compete in the championship via their performance in earlier qualifying events. They will use LEGO robots they have designed, built, and programmed to perform complex tasks. The public may also view the teams’ displays of their solutions to real-world problems related to the water-based theme. There will also be a maker fair with hands-on STEM activities for kids and a “RoboPalooza” exhibit of robots from First Robotics Competitions and FIRST Tech Challenges.

Help NSHS Marine Biology Students Supply Water Filters to Puerto Rico

Newton South HS’s Marine Biology students are responding to the current hurricane-induced public health crises in Puerto Rico by raising funds to purchase much needed water filters for affected communities there.  Donations by check (made out to “Newton South High School” with “PRWaterFilters” in the memo line) may be delivered to any NSHS house office or advisory teacher or mailed to NSHS Water Filters for Puerto Rico, 140 Brandeis Rd, Newton, MA 02459.

Women in STEM Event in Lowell, Postponed to Dec. 16

Women in STEM event for girls in Grades 7-12, originally scheduled for December 9, has been moved to Saturday, December 16, 10AM-3PM, in the UMass Lowell Makerspace (Falmouth Bldg., Rm 102, 1 University Avenue, Lowell). It’s sponsored by FIRST Robotics Competition Team 5962. At this event, students may participate in fun, hands-on activities led by female engineers. During lunch, there will be a discussion time for students to ask the engineers and members of the UMassLowell Society of Women Engineers (SWE) any questions they have. The event is free, and lunch is provided. Register here. No experience required!

Summer Research Science Institute at MIT: Applications Due Jan. 16

The Research Science Institute hosts 80 accomplished high-school students in a rigorous summer STEM research program at MIT, June 24-August 4, combining on-campus coursework in scientific theory and off-campus work in STEM research.  Students first participate in a week of intensive STEM classes, then conduct five-week individual research projects with mentors, and finally prepare written and oral presentations of their results. The program is designed for students entering senior year in the fall, but exceptions for younger students will be considered. Except for a $65 application fee (which may be waived upon request), the program is free to students.  Applications are due January 12.  For more information, email RSI.

Patriot Place STEM Teacher of the Year: Nominations Due Jan. 20

Each year, The Hall at Patriot Place recognizes a full-time, certified, K-12 STEM teacher in public or private school as its Massachusetts STEM Teacher of the Year.  Anyone may nominate a teacher by January 20, and nominated teachers will be asked to submit a separate application.  The winner’s school will receive $5,000 for STEM education, and the schools of the four other finalists will each receive $1,000.  For more information, email

Register for NuVu Spring and Summer Programs in Cambridge

Registration is now open for spring and summer programs at NuVu Studios in Cambridge.

Computer Science Education Week, Dec. 4-10: Hour of Code

December 4-10 is Computer Science Education Week, and Khan Academy is offering tips and resources to support parents working with their children on Hour of Code projects.

MIT Women’s Technology Program for Grade 11, Apply by Jan. 15

MIT’s Women’s Technology Program is an intensive, four-week summer residential academic program for girls currently in Grade 11 to explore engineering through classes, labs, and projects.  Separate programs are available for Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (40 students) and Mechanical Engineering (20 students).  Applicants must have strong curiosity about one of these fields (but no direct experience in it yet) and also excel in math and science.  Applications are available online and are due January 15.  There is no fee to apply.  The cost for attendees is $3,500 and is waived entirely for families earning less than $120,000.  Financial aid may also be available for other families in special circumstances.  For more information, first check the program’s FAQ and then email

FSU Planetarium Family Night: Holiday Skies, Dec. 15

The Christa McAuliffe Center at Framingham State University opens its planetarium for free public presentations on the third Friday of each month (except April).  The shows on December 15 will be Holiday Skies, at 5:30PM and 6:30PM. Space is limited, and pre-registration for the 5:30PM show or 6:30PM show is strongly recommended.  Arrive on campus 20 minutes early (directions and parking).

Even More STEM Holiday Gift Ideas from Boston Tech Mom

Following on her recent blog post about STEM-related holiday gift ideas, Boston Tech Mom has written about STEM gift recommendations from Project Lead The Way.