Our RE@LBlog readers know that we are dedicated to bringing our now over half-million+ visitors more encouraging reports on more STEM activities in K12. We’ve had dozens of our own blogs and many guest blogs from both teachers and students on STEM topics from aviation to our soon–to-be released Water Quality Investigation software product….just in time for next fall when school opens again.
RE@L does not endorse any particular presentations, but we do want our readers to be aware of the value of seeing STEM presentations and workshops in action. Here’s a listing of some of the many programs we found on Google: STEM workshops for schools and kids. Costs vary greatly, and some schools can find local technology businesses to provide these programs at no cost. Here’s one link we found on the internet, and there are many more: see Afterschool Alliance.
RE@L is pleased to bring to our many readers….teachers, students, parents and higher-ed faculty….a new RE@L Guest Blog from a talented, experienced educator-of-color, who brings STEM and Science to many interested audiences. Yes, it costs schools to make these presentations happen, but both students and their teachers are exposed to new and exciting STEM topics. It’s what RE@L likes to call, “a STEM-step forward.”
America’s Fun Science STEAM programs have intrigued many local students and teachers who want to learn more. Here, Dr. Tyronne Carter tells our RE@L readers all about his unique way of reaching more students by visiting their schools, wherever they are located.
Dr. Fun, as he is sometimes called, shows his audience many ways of engaging more girls and boys in fun learning.
It’s critical for our collective futures that we find more ways to reach all students, both genders, and every ethnic background.
“America’s Fun Science brings hands-on K-8 science enrichment activities and STEM/STEAM programs to schools, nonprofits, libraries, preschools, scouting organizations, community ed & recreation centers, adult care facilities and parents throughout the Twin Cities metro area and beyond.
Our scheduling is flexible, and our instructors are experienced (20 years teaching). We are award-winning, licensed K-8 science teachers and certified STEM instructors. We love working with young children, ALL young children, from preschool to grade 8.
Our programs are custom-designed by a licensed science teacher/certified STEM instructor and can be modified to suit your organization’s special needs.
We are NOT a part of any franchise, local or national, offering “one topic fits all,”canned educational programs. Instead, our STEM-Science presentation programs and workshops help promote team building, leadership, self-confidence, creativity and joy. We make science FUN! Take “brush-bots” for example! Click on the above photograph of Dr. Carter.
Here’s another example below of our various and many Summer School programs. “Fun Science and STEM Ideas For Summer!
The best way I’ve found to encourage STEM and science learning during the summer months is to engage with your children in fun, “hands on” science and STEM projects and activities. For example, as part of America’s Fun Science classroom programs we often give students a “Family Fun” take-home card with a simple science project they can do at home with their parents, guardians, friends or other family members.
These projects can range from a lemon battery made with lemons, a nail, wire, a copper penny and alligator clips to a rain/snow gauge made from an empty coffee can or mason jar and a ruler. The magic happens each time a student comes up with their own variation on the creation or assembly of a finished object.
Khan Academy is an example of a resource-rich site for students to visit online during the summer months. Khan Academy is a non-profit educational organization that has a large variety of educational videos available online. (Check out Khan Academy by clicking on the graphic to the right.”
It is also important for families to bond during shared activities at your local library, recreation or community center.
So America’s Fun Science has been invited each summer by several Hennepin County and St. Paul libraries to present fun activities such as Slime and our STEM/Science stage show. These are fun, family-friendly events that allow kids and parents the opportunity to experience and participate in a variety of elementary science demonstration.
The Bottom Line is: kids love to have fun, whatever they are doing….even learning new things. When learning and fun co-exist, you’ve got a great dynamic. That’s why our company slogan is, “We make science fun!”
Below I have listed two of our Family Fun Card activities, as well as a list of the free library events we will be offering in the Minnesota Twin Cites area if you happen to be in town during those days.
For more information, check us out by clicking on the graphic to the left for our FaceBook page. You can also find us on our website page. Click on the photo to the right below. We hope to see you new visitors. Regardless, we hope you have a fun, exploratory science summer.
Best Wishes for more fun STEM and Science learning!
DR. FUN GOES ON TO TELL KIDS HOW TO MAKE THEIR OWN LEMON BATTERY!
- Roll a lemon on the countertop while pressing down on it to smash the inside.
- Stick one zinc nail into the lemon as deeply as possible, but allow a little bit to stick out so you can attach an alligator clip & wire to it.
- Stick a copper penny into the same lemon as far as you can, close to the nail but not touching it. (You may need to use a small knife to cut a slit in the lemon.) If they do touch, your battery will not work.
- You have now assembled one lemon cell. Repeat steps 1 – 3 until you have three lemon cells.
- Connect the lemon cells together in a series with wire and alligator clips, as shown in the picture above. (You will put one alligator clip on each nail and penny.)
- Using one wire, connect the zinc nail on the first cell to the copper penny on the second. Using a second wire, connect the zinc nail on the second cell to the copper penny on the third lemon cell. Make sure no alligator clips touch each other.
- Connect a wire from the first lemon penny to the longer lead wire of the LED. Connect a wire from the third lemon zinc nail to the shorter wire of the LED. The LED should now light rather faintly if all the details are correct. Dim the room lights if needed. (RE@L adds: That’s how Thomas Edison got started!)
AND, FOR MORE SUMMER FUN, HERE’S HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN RAIN OR SNOW GAUGE!
Snow falls from the sky, and so does rain. Both of them end up as water drops. But how much water comes out? What you need:
- One plastic 12 inch ruler
- One coffee can or mason jar
- Clear plastic packing tape
What YOU do:
- On a snowy or rainy day, take the coffee can/mason jar, which will be your “collecting station.”
- Tape the plastic ruler vertically to the inside of the jar, so that the bottom of the ruler hits the bottom of the jar.
- Place the jar outside in an open area to collect the snow or rain.
- When the storm is over, check inside the jar to see how much snow or rain was collected.
- Additional step for snow: Bring the jar indoors and let the snow melt. Now how high is the water? What does this mean?
- Did your gauge match what the weather reports predicted? You can do this experiment over and over during the winter and summer months, and even keep a chart tracking the results.“
RE@L adds, you can also share your results with other students…what you learn on your own and with others can last a lifetime.
Dr. Tyronne Carter’s Bio:
“Dr. Tyronne Carter is a licensed K-12 principal, licensed K-8 science teacher, certified STEM instructor, and served 13 years in both Minneapolis and St. Paul school districts. He is the Director of Marketing and Curriculum Design for America’s Fun Science, a company he founded in 2015. America’s Fun Science delivers fun, hands-on science and STEAM programs for Pre-K through grade 8, throughout the Twin Cities metro area and beyond. The programs help promote team building, leadership, self-confidence, creativity and joy. Dr. Carter is also a Vietnam-Era Navy veteran, and published children’s book author. He recently appeared on the local TwinCity Public Television series, “Hands-On Science.” More information on America’s Fun Science programs can be found here or on their Facebook page.”
RE@L thanks Dr.Tyronne Carter for his Guest Blog, showing our readers how to find STEM and Science fun for all kids…and teachers, too!
There are some great career opportunities for students who want to know more science and STEM!