The National Science Foundation is awarding up to 18 multiyear grants for efforts that promote science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) in preK–12 schools. The awards this year are expected to total $10 million to $20 million, with individual awards ranging from $400,000 to $2 million apiece. The program—Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST)—is aimed at increasing awareness of STEM occupations among preK–12 students, motivating them to pursue STEM careers and helping them to develop disciplinary-based knowledge and practices, or promote critical thinking, reasoning, or communication skills needed for entering STEM workforce sectors. Proposed programs can be designed for engaging students within school, outside of school, or a combination of the two. Partnerships between preK–12 schools, colleges, universities, and other organizations are encouraged. Three types of grants will be awarded this year: a maximum of four two-year “Exploratory” grants of up to $400,000 each; a maximum of 12 three-year “Strategies” grants worth up to $1.2 million each; and a maximum of two three- to five-year “Successful Project Expansion and Dissemination” grants of up to $2 million each.
Each month we publish blogs and several newsletters full of digital learning, funding, professional growth, social media, and STEM resources. Below are items from our blogs and newsletters that educators turned to the most in September.
The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) is currently accepting nominations in honor of outstanding math and science (including computer science) teachers of K–6. The award recognizes those teachers who develop and implement a high-quality instructional program that is informed by content knowledge and enhances student learning. Awardees join a network of more than 4,700 past recipients and receive a certificate from the President of the United States, a trip to Washington, DC, and $10,000. Educators are invited to nominate a teacher or begin an application on the PAEMST website. Nominations close on April 1, 2018; applications must be completed by May 1, 2018.
Educators are invited to register to be an eCYBERMISSION Teacher/Team Advisor. eCybermission, a freeweb-based STEM competition for students in grades 6–9, promotes self-discovery and enables all students to recognize the real-life applications of STEM. eCYBERMISSION encourages students to develop solutions to real-world challenges in their local communities and compete for state, regional, and national awards. Teacher/Team Advisor Responsibilities include assembling a team; registering both teacher and students; assisting teams in choosing a Mission Challenge; assisting the team with its Mission Challenge; and submitting the team’s Mission Folder.