Back-to-School STEM: Resources to Increase Access and Engagement

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The National Girls Collaborative Project (NGCP) believes STEM skills can be acquired by anyone and fostered in everyone. Yet, entire groups of today’s youth do not identify with or have not had access to (e.g., internet, tools, role models, culturally relevant curriculum) to STEM fields.

To change this dynamic, NGCP’s priority goals include catalyzing equity in STEM from research to practice by providing actionable knowledge that transforms the STEM experience. For classroom and Out-of-School Time (OST) educators, we’ve created this list of NGCP resources designed to increase access and engagement of all youth in STEM.

Tools and Activities

  • IF/THEN Collection – This free digital library has photos, videos, posters, and more, featuring diverse women STEM innovators – all available for educational and other non-commercial use. Watch the IF/THEN Collection Video Tour for a quick overview of the site and our favorite resources. We recommend these entry points to find plug-and-play resources:
    • Activity Sheets – A compilation of all the puzzles, games, and hands-on projects included in the Collection, many with educator guides and student activity sheets
    • Assets for Afterschool and Summer Programs – A curated set of assets that can be used to increases access and engagement in STEM for afterschool and summer learning programs
    • Educator Hub – A one-stop shop with ideas for using the Collection’s authentic and relatable content about women in STEM, aligned with learning standards
  • FabFems – This international database connects young women with female STEM professionals during critical transition points in the career pathway. FabFems is free and open to young women, families, and girl-serving STEM programs. Use it to find speakers and to connect with female STEM role models, all passionate about helping spark career interest and awareness.

Webinar Recordings

  • Girls STEAM Ahead with NASA Free Resources – Presenters provide an overview of the NASA program and delve into its free resources, including a range of computer-based and paper-based activities, print products, and a Program Cookbook for facilitators.
  • The M in STEM: Math in Everyday Life – Math is prevalent and relevant in everyday life, including in afterschool spaces. Learn how to recognize and embrace authentic math moments and activities to help engage youth in math.
  • Families & STEAM: Strengthening Relationships & Building Partnerships – Family engagement in STEAM can come in many forms, but how can you move into a deeper partnership with families? Presenters explore ways to work with families to create equitable and accessible STEAM learning for youth.
  • Transforming the T in STEM – Latinx, Black, and Indigenous women represent less than 10% of women in the STEM workforce. TECHNOLOchicas staff showcase opportunities and resources to support and enhance STEM education for Hispanic and Latina women and girls.

Exemplary Practices

  • Engaging Girls in STEM: According to the research, what works to engage and support girls in STEM? This selection of publications present new research, or distill existing research, and provide it in user-friendly formats.
  • Access and Equity: It is critical to provide every girl high-quality STEM opportunities, regardless of race, ethnicity, geography, income level, and disability status. The curated list of resources has research and projects that engage and serve girls who are often most underrepresented in STEM.

Programs and Initiatives

FabFems
This international database connects young women with female STEM professionals during critical transition points in the career pathway.
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