The College Board, with help from a $5 million grant from Google, recently announced the formation of the AP STEM Access program, designed to create approximately 500 new STEM-focused AP classes in high schools across the country. Female and minority students—typically underrepresented in such programs—will be strongly encouraged to enroll.
If your daughter (or son!) is interested in STEM, there are many resources out there to help foster that interest. One great site is TheMakerMom.com, run by Kim Moldofsky, a tech enthusiast and mother of gifted teen boys. The website has a specific section with resources for gifted kids, and she hosts monthly #STEMchats on Twitter. Last month’s discussion, sponsored by PBS Kids’ Design Squad Nation, focused on “Tweens and Engineering.” Panelists offered resources, as well as advice on how to show kids that engineering helps change the world and how to set up an environment that is conducive to engineering (the transcript, as well as links to all resources, can be found here). The next #STEMchat takes place tonight at 9 p.m. Eastern time: it’s holiday themed and sponsored by littleBits, a company that makes electronic gadgetry kits that help teach kids (and adults) about engineering concepts while having fun, too.
And if you’d like to bring some engineering fun into your classroom, you can check out our book Hands-On Engineering, which teaches 21st-century skills through real-world problems to students in grades 4–7.