Green Newton created its School Connections initiative two years ago to promote environmental sustainability in and beyond Newton classrooms. It’s currently working with seven of Newton’s 15 elementary schools, one of four middle schools, and both high schools to create school gardens, teach sustainability, and develop awareness of environmental challenges and solutions. The group also sponsors Students for a Greener World — an organization of Newton middle- and high-school students interested in making a positive environmental impact and teaching kids about the environment. For more information, sign up for the School Connections e-newsletter and/or email email@example.com.
The Boston Red Sox offers Wally’s Math Academy, a math enrichment application that is available free to educators at redsox.com/wallysmathacademy. For students in Grades 2-4 (and soon for other grades in elementary and middle school), it replaces generic word problems with actual game data, incorporating video recaps of Red Sox games and photos of players.
Nathaniel and Theo, two high-school students in Weston, are offering to tutor students in the Scratch programming language. Both students have completed college-level courses in computer science and have experience working with kids. They offer one-on-one tutoring sessions (at $20/hour) at the Weston Public Library and the Newton Free Library. Their Scratch tutoring is part of the students’ social venture in vermicomposting called MunchPoop, to help address climate change. Go to their website for additional information or to sign up.
The family of Cynthia Zervas, wife Dr. Frank Zervas (principal of the former Beethoven Avenue School), has generously donated $5,000 to Zervas Elementary School to establish the Cynthia Zervas STEM Center at the school and purchase classroom kits for building students’ skills in STEM. The School Committee formally accepted this donation at its most recent meeting.
DiscoverE.org offers a substantial catalog of over 450 free activities for Engineers Week (February 17-23) and Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day (February 21), as well as free kits (poster, classroom activities, and other resources) to support teachers for Engineers Week and Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day ($2 shipping charge per kit).
Resisting Scientific Misinformation is a free, one-week curriculum for Grades 6-12 designed to help students learn to guard against misinformation. It was created by Andy Zucker (former Senior Research Scientist at the Concord Consortium) and Penny Noyce (Tumblehome and STEM Next), with video production assistance from NOVA staff at WGBH, and it consists of four lessons and homework. Most of the class time is spent not in videos or lectures but in activities such as researching to investigate a variety of “scientific” claims. All materials, a teacher guide, and a one-page introductory flyer are freely available online.
Boston Tech Mom (“a parent’s guide to raising a future techie”) has published a very useful, comprehensive list of Math Programs for Kids in Massachusetts — for both year-round and summer.
The Newton Free Library’s Makerspace will offer public Open Studio hours starting in February, so that people of all ages can share ideas and knowledge using the Makerspace’s 3D printers, sewing machines, serger, die-cutting machine, etc. It’s in the back of the library, near the teen space. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. All are invited to join the Makerspace’s online Meetup to stay connected.
- Mondays 3PM-6PM (but not the first and fourth Mondays of the month)
- Wednesdays 2PM-9PM
- Thursdays 9:30AM-Noon
- Fridays 2PM-5PM
The U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, has created an interactive Periodic Table of STEM Occupations, showing for a variety of sample occupations: required education levels, forecasts of employment growth, median annual wages, and links to lots more details for each.
The Edge on Science email newsletter doesn’t just talk about its excellent STEM programs. This month the newsletter tells us about the historic fly-by that NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft will make on New Year’s Eve — running by Ultima Thule in the Kuiper Belt. It also includes related links and at-home experiments. Sign up at the Edge on Science site.