Category Archives: Opportunities

Newton Library Seeks Adult Volunteer Instructor for ‘Girls Who Code’

As announced last week, the Newton Free Library will offer the Girls Who Code after-school program, 4-6PM on Fridays this year, November through May, to girls in Grades 6-12.  The Library seeks a volunteer instructor to commit 8 hours per month during this time to offer girls access to computer science education using the Girls Who Code curriculum.  The ideal volunteer will be proficient in programming languages, have intermediate knowledge of data structures and algorithms, and might be a current or former software developer or a current undergraduate or graduate student with major or minor in computer science.  The most successful volunteer instructors have had some type of experience teaching or working with youth — as teaching assistants, camp counselors, or tutors — although this is not required.  Find more info in this flyer (PDF).  If interested, contact Liz at or 617-796-1380.

High-School Volunteers Sought for Scratch Programming Club for Grades 3-6

In November, the Newton Free Library will launch a monthly club for kids in Grades 3-6 to learn Scratch programming.   The Library seeks a few high-school student volunteers to help out.  They should know Scratch and be willing to commit an hour a month during the school year.   The meeting time is initially set for Thursdays, 6:30-7:30PM, but it may be adjusted to fit volunteers’ schedules.  No advance preparation is required, and a librarian will supervise.  If interested, contact Deena Zuckerman at

Workshop: Simulation and Modeling for Middle-School STEM Teachers, Nov. 10

MassCAN (the Massachusetts Computing Attainment Network) is offering a free workshop for middle-school teachers on November 10, 8:30AM-2:30PM on Project GUTSGrowing Up Thinking Scientifically.  GUTS is a STEM program for middle-school students that is working with to deliver four instructional modules and professional development for the introduction of computer science concepts into middle-school science classrooms within the context of modeling and simulation.   This workshop will be held at the Education Development Center, 43 Foundry Ave. in Waltham.  It will be followed by an online MOOC running November-January.  Register online.  Bring a laptop.  Breakfast and lunch will be provided.  For more information, contact Kelly Powers at or 617-618-2818.

Professional Development STEM Workshops at WPI, Starting Oct. 29

The first in a series of STEM workshops for teachers will take place on Wednesday, October 29, 3:30-6:30PM at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.  Using NGSS standards and CC math concepts of scaling, participants will design a simple biomedical device to extract foreign objects from a child’s ear.  To register, see the website or email

Registration is Open for Boston College Splash — Grades 9-12, Nov. 16

Boston College will hold BC Splash on Sunday, November 16 from 9AM to 4PM.  Splash is a student-run program in which undergraduates and graduate students teach free mini-courses for high-school students.  Running in parallel is the Parent Program for parents to talk with financial advisors, admissions directors, and faculty.  Registration is required, is first-come/first-served, and is open until November 12.  STEM-oriented courses this year include:

  • Introduction to Programming with Pytho
  • Message from the TARDIS: The Science Behind Doctor Who
  • Star Stuff: How to Walk and Talk Like a True Astronomer
  • Introductory Neuroscience!
  • Space: Why it’s a lot cooler than you think
  • Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream
  • Intro to Computer Science

For more information, email or call 617-291-7524.

Registration is Open for MIT Splash — Grades 9-12, Nov. 22-23

MIT’s Splash program runs each year on the weekend before Thanksgiving — this year, on November 22-23 (1oAM-9PM on Saturday, and 9AM-6PM on Sunday).  It gives students in Grades 9-12 the opportunity to take a wide range of over mini-courses and participate in drop-in activities.  This year, over 300 courses will be offered in the areas of Science, Computers & Programming, Engineering, and Mathematics — plus other stuff.  Here’s a list of the STEM-related courses (PDF).   The cost is $40 regardless of the number of courses taken, and generous financial aid is available.  The first phase of registration is now open, in which students will have at least until November 1 to specify their preferences for classes.  Classes will then be filled by lottery, treating equally all those who register anytime in the first phase of registration.  Lottery results will be available November 8.  Some classes may be available for those registering later, in a subsequent phase of registration.  See the Student Guide page and also the More Info page.  There’s also a Parent’s Program with campus tours and discussion of issues of interest to parents.

New Computer Science Clubs at Newton Free Library in November

Register for new, free computer-science clubs for kids and teens at the Newton Free Library in its second-floor computer center:

Scratch Club:  A new monthly club for Grades 3-6 will start meeting on Thursday, November 6, 6:30-7:30PM in the second floor Computer Center.  In one-hour sessions, kids will explore and work with Scratch, a free programming language designed at MIT for creating games, animation and stories.  Online registration is required and opens October 23.  For more information, call 617-796-1370.

Girls Who Code Club:  GWC is a national non-profit organization aiming to inspire, educate, and equip girls with the computing skills.  In Newton, GWC is open to girls in Grades 9-12 and will meet 4-6PM on Fridays throughout the school year (in November:  7, 14, 21, 28).   Participants will learn about concepts and techniquese of artificial intelligence, graphics, game design, cryptography, and mobile development.  Online registration is required.  For information, scroll down on this page to Girls Who Code, or email or call 617-796-1360.

STEM Fun for Kids at Newton Free Library

The Newton Free Library will offer these free STEM programs in November:

Magnet Fun:  Kids ages 3-5, accompanied by adults, are invited to drop in on Thursday, November 13, 2:30-3:30PM in Druker Auditorium to experiment and play with magnets.

Making Things in 3D:  Design to Print:  Students in Grades 6-12 will learn how to design 3D objects using free computer-aided-design software and then print them on the library’s new 3D printer.  Monday, November 24, 4-5:30PM in the second-floor Computer Center.  Space is limited.  Registration is required and opens on November 3.

WGBH’s STEM Video Challenge for Mass. Teachers

WGBH is conducting a STEM Teacher Video Challenge for Massachusetts teachers seeking creative solutions for teaching STEM.  It’s “an online film school just for STEM teachers,” with training videos on YouTube and live, hosted hangouts on Google and culminating in a film-making competition.  Teachers should watch the introductory video, join in the online training, produce a video (1-5 minutes), and submit it by February 1.  Winners will receive camera equipment for their classrooms, and their videos will be shared nationally by WGBH and PBS Learning Media.  All participants will receive Google Play app cards.  Sponsored by the Google Community Grants Fund of Tides Foundation.

“AMP It Up” Challenge Engages Students in Advanced Manufacturing

The AMP it up! Challenge invites students to research an advanced manufacturing innovation in Massachusetts and then present it in a 3-minute video to explain how it’s made, why it matters, and what it means to the student.  One middle school and one high school in each of five regions in the state will each win $2,500 in grant funding, and a grand prize of $5,000 will also be awarded.  Manufacturers are encouraged to sign up now to support the challenge by talking with students and offering factory tours.  Schools should sign up before December 31 to participage and may be represented by individual students, classes, groups, or clubs.  Students will begin researching in January and submit their videos by April 15.