STEM Takes Flight

National Soaring Museum

Things are looking up for STEM educator Kaye Norton, literally. As the National Soaring Museum’s Education Services Coordinator, Norton wants her students looking up at the sky to understand what they're learning about the science of motorless flight.


Spooky STEM for Halloween

Glowing hands, fake blood, "bleeding" paper

Planning a haunted house or spooky lab for your school, your neighborhood, or even your library? Stir some STEM into your special effects! Halloween-friendly activities at can increase the "ghoul factor" to engage learners in exploring mixtures, the immune system, light and vision, acids and bases, energy and more. (Many activities include step-by-step instructional videos.)


Chasing Ice for Earth Science Week

glacier STEM

National Geographic photographer James Balog has spent years documenting the melting of Earth's glaciers. His stunning film Chasing Ice uses time-lapse cameras to "compress years into seconds and capture ancient mountains of ice in motion as they disappear at a breathtaking rate." Chasing Ice will be on video and in education versions this fall. For Earth Science Week October 13-19, connect the film to climate change activities at


Avast me hearties—it's Pirate Science!

Pirates + STEM

Aaaaaaaarrrrrrre you running a pirate themed camp or event this summer? Or planning ahead for Talk Like a Pirate Day, September 19? Well shiver me timbers—it's time for pirate science! 


Science in the Park at ASTC

Professional and public science

This year's Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC) conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico will include a public event called "Science in the Park." In Tiguex Park, science educators attending the conference from around the world will show off their best outreach activities, prototypes, and demonstrations to local students and members of the science museum and informal science education communities.  


A picture's worth a billion pixels

Mars mosaic

Humans have yet to stand on the surface of Mars, but zooming in on the red planet with NASA's billion-pixel interactive image is almost like being there. The new online interactive lets Earth-bound explorers zoom ultra close-in to the Martian surface, from more than 228 million miles away.

Clocking in at 1.3 billion pixels, the image's high resolution version combines nearly 900 photos—taken by NASA's Curiosity rover—in a mosaic of the planet's rocky, dusty details. (The photo shown here is one of Curiosity's lower resolution "self portraits.")


Classroom in the Kelp—Teaching Under Water

Teaching While Diving

Anne Scanlon’s classroom is cold, wet and smells like fish and seaweed. She wouldn't have it any other way. That’s because Scanlon is not only an informal educator, but one of 100 specially trained volunteer scuba divers at Monterey Bay Aquarium in California.

14JUN Named to ALA Great Websites for Kids

American Library Association honor for SMILE website


The American Library Association has named to its Great Websites for Kids, among the recommended Sites for Parents, Caregivers, Teachers and Others. ALA's Association for Library Service to Children recognized as an exemplary website.

Criteria for selection include:

Being excellent and appropriate for young people up to and including age fourteen.

Letting users make comments or ask questions. 

Enriching the user’s experience and expanding the imagination.


Sound "Sandwiches" on White House Menu

More STEM at White House Easter Egg Roll

Sound "sandwiches" were the newest item on the science menu at the 2013 White House Easter Egg Roll. The Association of Science-Technology Centers served up 2,500 Exploratorium Sound Sandwich activities as part of the annual event's expanded science exploration area. 


Engineer Role Models—real and toy

Alice Agogino and Engineer Barbie

Mechanical engineer Alice Agogino is not anti-Barbie, by any means. Growing up she liked Barbie dolls, and they inspired her to design and sew her own clothes as a teenager. That hobby gave her tools she would later put to good use as an engineer. So it’s not surprising that when the National Academy of Engineering asked for input to help Mattel designers equip a new Computer Engineer Barbie®, Agogino rose to the challenge. 

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