Category Archives: Recommendations

Science Club for Girls: #TeenSTEM Campaign and YLS Summer Showcase

On Monday, August 1, Science Club for Girls launches its 12-day #TeenSTEM Campaign to support its Young Leaders in STEM (YLS) summer program in Boston and Cambridge. See the campaign video and consider making a donation for items such as:

  • Programmable circuit boards for girls to design and make their own wearable technology
  • Materials for hands-on STEM outreach activities designed by teens
  • Career-exploration field trips and job shadowings at leading STEM companies
  • Gel transfer stacks for working with proteins during “neuroscience week”

The public is also invited to the YLS Summer Showcase on August 11, 5:30-7:30PM, at Simmons College’s Paresky Conference Center (Main College Building, 300 Fenway in Boston), where YLS students will present their summer projects.  Register (free) and donate (optional) for a terrific program.  Check out Science Club for Girls on Facebook and Twitter.

A note about reading NewtonSTEM’s weekly newsletter…

NewtonSTEM aims to write about STEM events as early as possible, and in general, we refrain from repeated posts about the same event.  This means that events can be lost in the shuffle if they were posted with a lot of lead time.  The NewtonSTEM weekly newsletter includes all new posts written in the previous week, but it does not include all posts relevant to the upcoming week.  In order to keep current on upcoming events, newsletter readers may want to:

  • Review the “Earlier Announcements” list at the end of each newsletter.
  • Review the NewtonSTEM calendar for upcoming events.  (The description of each event includes a link to the NewtonSTEM post about it.)
  • Use the Search box in the right-hand column of the NewtonSTEM site.
  • Click on Categories of interest in the list in the right-hand column of the site.

NNHS Science Team Raises Funds by Raking Your Leaves

The Newton North HS Science Team will rake your leaves to raise funds to pay for its competition fees and supplies for building and studying.  Contact team vice president Nick Zhang at to help the team and get a clean lawn!

Boston Tech Mom Recommends Pixar Exhibit at Museum of Science

Boston Tech Mom recommends the Museum of Science‘s exhibit, The Science Behind Pixar, as a “must-see family activity” before it leaves the museum for a road trip on January 10.  Read her review for details.

Boston Tech Mom: Tech Events for Kids, Sept. 2015

Boston Tech Mom (“a parent’s guide to raising a future techie”) is a great resource for all things STEM around Boston — including her recent post about Tech Events for Kids in Boston – September 2015 Roundup.

Free, Helpful, and Easy: Newton Library’s STEM Survey

Please take a few minutes to help the Newton Free Library by completing their short Technology Survey on STEM interest and awareness.  You may respond for yourself and/or for your children.  (Please take the survey before you read about all the Library’s STEAM programs, which might skew the results by increasing your awareness and interest!)

Presidential Awards for Excellence in Math/Science Teaching: Nominations Close April 1

Anyone may nominate a teacher for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST).  This year, teachers of Grades 7-12 are eligible.  (Next year, Grades K-6 will be eligible.)  In addition, teachers must have five years STEM teaching experience and be full-time employees of public or private schools/districts.  Nominations close on April 1.  Winners will receive a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation and recognition at events in Washington, DC.

Calling All of Newton’s FIRST Lego League Coaches — Former, Current, and Potential

Josh Gahm, parent-coach of the Cabot Elementary School caBOTs, is working with NewtonSTEM to create a forum for FIRST Lego League (FLL) coaches in Newton.  If you’re a current or former FLL coach — or if you’re interested in becoming one — please email to let us know who you are.

FLL promotes inspiring, educational robotics competitions among teams of children 9-14 years old worldwide.   For several years, various FLL teams have sprung up in Newton, hosted by elementary and middle schools, after-school programs, or parents in their homes.  There’s a continuing need for more FLL teams in Newton, judging from inquiries received by NewtonSTEM.  The constraint seems to be the number of adults volunteering to coach.  You don’t need to be a STEM expert to coach; you need a knack for managing small groups of children.  Paul Barbone, former parent-coach of the Oak Hill FLL MegaOHMS, has written a very informative memo for new coaches, Introduction to Coaching a FIRST Lego Team (PDF).  Let’s get focused on how we can recruit and support new FLL coaches.

Message from a STEM Undergraduate

Here’s another in our series of STEM-related reflections by recent Newton high-school graduates. Dan Ehrlich, who graduated last year from Newton South, is a freshman studying applied math at NYU.

Biology. Chemistry. Oceanography. Geology. Astrophysics. One by one, the sciences were crossed off my list of potential college majors. In middle school, I thought for a while that I would be a scientist. I would discover the cure for cancer (little did I know that there were multiple types), or design autonomous underwater vehicles and explore the ocean depths. I would be a theoretical chemist or perhaps a neurologist who understood the brain so well that he created an artificial intelligence. I wanted to work on the frontiers of science. I wanted to change the world. I knew I would be a scientist before I had even picked up my first biology textbook.

Two things happened in high school, however, that dissuaded me from these dreams: Continue reading

Nominations Open for Mass. STEM Teacher of the Year

Each year, The Hall at Patriot Place and Raytheon together recognize a full-time, certified, K-12 STEM teacher in public or private school as their Massachusetts STEM Teacher of the Year.  Anyone may nominate a teacher by February 28, and nominated teachers must submit their part of the application by March 17.  The winner’s school will receive $5,000 for STEM education, and the schools of the four other finalists will each receive $1,000.  See details here (PDF).