Delivering Hands-On Experiences with STEM Technologies in Virtual Learning Environments: Professional Development for a Diverse Network of School Educators


Diversifying the STEM pipeline requires reforming school educator practices to adjust how STEM messaging and learning experiences influence diverse young people’s interests and trajectory into STEM long-term. Catalyzing Inclusive STEM Experiences All Year Round (CISTEME365) is an NSF multi-pronged project designed to offer professional development and networked community for school educators to improve their knowledge and implementation of STEM experiences for their students. We worked with school educators to create and implement informal hands-on activities with STEM technologies for students to experience project-based engineering design throughout the school year. As we continue onto our program’s second installment, we have adjusted our professional curricular offerings and modified our STEM club experiences to virtual-only formats. Using the experiences from the first two years, we demonstrate and discuss our current practices of making these adjustments from our leadership team. We collaboratively reflected on the experiences of leading virtual STEM clubs from our networked community of educators. This presentation highlights lessons and practices learned to ignite the potential for postsecondary and K-12 educators to work together, displays the capacity for school educators to deliver STEM club experiences in a virtual format, and demonstrates the need to build networked communities for K-12 educators to diversify the STEM pipeline.


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Conference proceeding
A. T. Simpson
L. Rosu
L. Hebert
I. S. Ahmad
M. Pollock
and L. Goddard
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