Category Archives: Events

Public Telescope Nights on Tuesdays at Clay Observatory

The Clay Center Observatory, on the campus of Dexter Southfield School (20 Newton Street in Brookline; 5th floor), holds Public Telescope Nights on most Tuesdays in the spring and fall, from 8PM to 9PM.  This spring, they continue through May.  Register in advance (and sign up for the Center’s email list).  These events are canceled if weather is rainy or overcast:  Call 617-454-2795 one hour before the event for a recorded message.  The Clay Center offers a range of Outreach Programs for community groups.  Check the Center’s calendar for future events.

The observatory contains a 25-inch telescope with optically perfect mirrors — similar in optical design to the Hubble Space Telescope.  It’s protected by two airlocks, a dome powered by solar cells and wind turbine, and its own foundation that is completely isolated from the foundation of the surrounding building.  The telescope and dome are computerized and can be operated through the Internet by researchers anywhere in the world.

Latino STEM Alliance: Robotics Competition & Science Fair, May 21

On Saturday, May 21, the Latino STEM Alliance will hold its annual Robotics Competition & Science Activities Fair from 10AM to 2PM at the Salvation Army Kroc Center, 650 Dudley Street in Boston.   Besides a Boston-wide robotics competition (with 20 teams representing 12 Boston schools and community centers), this free event will feature fun, hands-on science and engineering activities for the whole family offered by partners from SIM BostonKRONOS, National Grid, and other sponsoring organizations.  Here’s a short video of last year’s event.  Register online to help the event organizers plan.  To apply to be an exhibitor, complete this form.

The Latino STEM Alliance works with host schools to offer after-school robotics programs in Boston to foster leadership, teamwork, problem-solving, persistence, and communication skills.  Its curriculum includes computer programming, the engineering process, and basic physics, dynamics, and geometry.  Newton’s Chuck Hurwitz is a long-time member of its leadership team.  Tax-deductible donations are appreciated.  For more information, contact Event Coordinator Tariana Little ( or Executive Director Amanda Martinez (

Workshops in Space Exploration (WiSE), July 11-29

Science educators and enthusiasts are invited to attend any of a series of Workshops in Space Exploration (WiSE) at Tufts University:

  • July 11, 12, 14, 15:  Exploring the Solar System
  • July 18, 19, 21, 22:  Exploring the Milky Way
  • July 25, 26, 28, 29:  Exploring the Cosmos

The cost is $300 per four-day workshop, with scholarships available to Massachusetts educators.  The workshop presenters, Bill Waller and Danilo Marchesini, are professional astronomers and educators who are dedicated to sharing the wonders of the cosmos with people of all ages and abilities.  To get on the mailing list or for more information, email

Reminders: STEM Events in the Next 7 Days

Click on any event for more information and a link to its NewtonSTEM post.  For information on other events, see the NewtonSTEM Calendar of STEM Events.

KidWind Challenge for Middle/High School Students at UMass Lowell, Apr. 30

Any team of 1-10 students (Grades 4-12) with an adult coach (parent, teacher) may enter the KidWind Challenge in an attempt to create the most efficient, functional, and innovative wind turbine.  Register for free.  Plan, build, and test your design. Then bring it to Challenge Day at UMass Lowell, April 30, 9AM-3PM to run it in the wind tunnel and compete for prizes and a chance to be invited to the nationals.

‘Science on State Street’ Festival in Framingham, Apr. 23

Framingham State University’s Christa McAuliffe Center will hold its second annual Science on State Street festival on April 23, 10AM-2PM, on its campus (directions).  It’s free and open to all ages, with hands-on activities (in biology, chemistry, physics, food science, robotics and engineering), presentations by FSU faculty and invited scientists, conversations and performances that explore the interaction between science and the arts, and planetarium programs.  There will be a live sky planetarium presentation at 10AM for children 5 and younger, a do-it-yourself Rube Goldberg machine, and opportunities to build a battery, program a robot, interact with exotic insects, explore chemistry, and meet the author of “The Secret Case of the Space Station Stowaways.”

Two Free NEACT Talks on Teaching Chemistry, Apr. 30

At the annual meeting of the New England Association of Chemistry Teachers, on Saturday, April 30 at 9AM at Wellesley College, there will be two featured talks:

  • “Making STEM learning relevant, stimulating, and visible through customized curriculum“ – Dr. Didem Vardar-Ulu (Boston University)
  • “Using Green Chemistry Principles to Improve Production of Plexiglas: Exploration of Catalysts for Cyanohydrin Hydration” – Dr. Emma Downs (Fitchburg State University)

The talks are aimed at chemistry teachers.  Admission is free, and membership in NEACT is encouraged.  RSVP to Leslie Bishop ( by April 24.

Olin College Spring Expo, May 9 and SCOPE Summit, May 10

Each spring, Olin College of Engineering holds two public events to showcase the work of its students:

  • Olin Spring Exposition, May 9 (10AM-3:30PM):  First-, second-, and third-year students present their projects in poster sessions, oral presentations, and artistic performances.  The list of presentations and performances will be available on the expo site the week before the event, but you can see last semester’s list here.  Register by May 8.  For information, email
  • SCOPE Summit, May 10 (9:30AM-3:30PM):  Seniors present the results of their year-long, corporate-sponsored Capstone projects via rocket talks and poster sessions.  Register to attend.

Tufts CEEO April Vacation LEGO Workshop, Grades 4-6

Tufts University’s Center for Engineering Education and Outreach will host a four-day workshop over the April break for students in Grades 4-6 on April 19-22, 9AM-3PM.  Students will use MINDSTORMS EV3 and other LEGO materials in storytelling and robotic challenges.  The cost is $400.  Registration is complete upon receipt of payment.

MassBay STEM Expo, May 3

MassBay Community College will host its bi-annual STEM Expo, 1PM-2:30PM on May 3 at its Wellesley Hills campus cafeteria (50 Oakland Street) to accomplishments of students and faculty.  Topics include Engineering Design, Robotics, Programming, Web Design, Cyber Security, Statistics and Quantitative Reasoning, and Biology and Biotechnology.  RSVP online.  For more information, contact Marina Bograd at