Below are a list of free resources you can use in your program!

Planning Guides
From TASC (The After-School Corporation), "How To Design and Run Great Programs and Activities"

California AfterSchool Network's STEM Program Planning Tool

Equity and Inclusion

General Best Practices

Best Practices from NPASS (National Partnerships in Afterschool Science)

How to Talk About Afterschool
Out-of-School Time STEM!

21st Century Afterschool Science Project Model

Frontiers in Urban Science Exploration (FUSE) Resource Guide

Edutopia article on STEM and re-branding failure!

Learning: A Holistic View- Commentary by Alan J. Friedman on learning, published by Education Week

Building on youth development and activity engagement, Click2Science (a national professional development resource for the development of STEM facilitation skills) will facilitate a webinar for Iowa on the development of a STEM identity and share information regarding resources that they will be releasing surrounding this topic.

To hear the webinar recording, click here.

Four strategies you can put to work right away in your program (some of them are things you are probably already doing, but you may not think of them as related to STEM or identity):
  1. Get to know the students in your program – recognize their interests
  2. Plan how to integrate their interests into STEM experiences. If you can, use the expertise of the teachers in your school to help plan meaningful experiences.
  3. Emphasize STEM practices and processes. Don’t focus on products, but on processes
  4. Take time and have fun with it. Like so many skills, mastering STEM takes time and lots of practice

It can be challenging to connect to STEM professionals in your community, so here are some great websites that can help you build on your students’ interests to find STEM activities and connect them to real people who work in these fields.

8 Practices of Science and Engineering from the Next Generation Science Standards. Learn more about the practices through this article.
  1. Asking questions (for science) and defining problems (for engineering)
  2. Developing and using models
  3. Planning and carrying out investigations
  4. Analyzing and interpreting data
  5. Using mathematics, information and computer technology, and computational thinking
  6. Constructing explanations (for science) and designing solutions (for engineering)
  7. Engaging in argument from evidence
  8. Obtaining, evaluating and communicating information

Other Resources and Research:
Click2Science PD Video on STEM Identity:
Project Exploration helps youth develop a STEM identity:
TechBridge focuses on supporting girls in STEM:
Why focus on identity in elementary and middle school:
Future aspirations by gender and race:
Engaging students in STEM practices:

The Impact After School April 22, 2015 Pre-Conference STEM Workshop materials can be downloaded here:

We kicked off the Impact After School Conference with a day-long STEM pre-conference, featuring a national STEM expert, Maryann Stimmer, who is the Owner and Founder of STEMeducators. Ms. Stimmer was also recently recognized by the NAA as one of the “Most Influential in STEM” in the AfterSchool Today Spring 2015 publication. Then, the Impact conference sessions began on the morning of April 23, with plenty of workshops and topic areas to choose from, featuring 4 conference sessions per block for an overall 28 breakout sessions over the course of two days. To view the full agenda, click here.

Pre-Conference Materials:



What does STEM Look Like in Out-of-School Time Programs?

Recommended Afterschool STEM Curricula


Facts About Afterschool:

Over 90 percent of our lives is spent outside the classroom in informal learning environments! Check out this infographic:

LIFE Center: Stevens, R. Bransford, J. & Stevens, A., 2005
The Iowa STEM Active Learning Community Partners have developed a case statement explaining why informal STEM is such a critical investment for the state.