17 Challenges and Competitions: A STEM, PBL, Common Core Series/Goldmine of Resources

5/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
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Welcome to a series that is must read for any PBL or STEM educator.  It will include information to reflect and build upon as you consider both PBL and STEM.  Best of all, it will finish with over 50 amazing resources you will want to investigate.  First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS.  As always,  I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)

Quick Note  I have been getting a lot of requests asking if I will make a visit to your school, organization, or conference. Please be aware that I am available to assist you in providing professional development and presentations. I have had the opportunity to network in person across the country and invite your inquiry at my booking information page and at mjgormans@gmail.com.

The STEM and PBL Series

Part 3…  17  Challenges and Competitions ….A  STEM, PBL, Common Core Series… A Goldmine of Resources

I know you have been waiting for the resources. I do hope the past two posts have helped you build a foundation and have provided some reflection. I am sure you are aware that there are some wonderful opportunities to engage your students online in the STEM arena.  I decided to go through the internet and find what I feel are some of the very best and share them with you!

I often tell people you do not have to enter a competition to use the resources, although the completions are a lot of fun! In fact, many times a resource in a competition can be the perfect tool for a scaffolding activity.This is a perfect opportunity for some formative learning… which I will address in my next post with about 23 awesome resources. Another great reason to sign up!

Remember that with the end of the school year many of these competitions are over… but you can learn about them and start putting possibilities on your calendar for next year. Also remember many of these contain great resources that can be used anytime.   I really hope you enjoy the list and please let me know of something I should have included. I invite the opportunity to double the list with your help!

Challenges and  Competitions

1. Siemens We Can Change The World Challenge – Great site loaded with resources, standards, and ideas. Enter the competition or just use the resources that are provided. Applicable to all levels of K-12 education.

2. Kids Science Challenge – Awesome and inspiring challenges involving bio-designed scientific inventions, sports on Mars, and detective science. Be sure to check out the great podcasts listed in Pulse of the Planet.

3. Young Scientists Challenge – Great resource for students in  K-8. Lessons, multi-media, and other materials that can be incorporated into PBL units.

4. National Engineer Week: Future City – Great Project-Based Learning Activity incorporating STEAM along with Language Arts and Social Studies. Engage students with Sim City Software, model building, and a new curriculum designed to integrate disciplines.

5. Google Science Fair - The Google Science Fair challenges students aged 13-18 to carry out a scientific investigation on a real-world problem or issue that interests them. The competition asks them to carry the investigation forward through rigorous experimentation, recording and conclusions. Students compete with peers in their age group from all over the world to win scholarships, internships and once-in-a-lifetime experiences.

6. National STEM Video Game Challenge - Inspired by the Educate to Innovate Campaign, President Obama’s initiative to promote a renewed focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education, the National STEM Video Game Challenge is a multi-year competition whose goal is to motivate interest in STEM learning among America’s youth by tapping into students’ natural passion for playing and making video games.

More Challenges (Not as big of description… but some cool STEM activities)

7. CyberPatriots - Great PBL program based on code and cyber security from the US Air Force Association

8. Imagine Cup - A wonderful Microsoft Competition designed to push STEM and imagination.

9. Dupont Challenge - A  STEM program promoting “What is Your Challenge?”

10. Moody’s Mega Math Challenge - Program designed to go beyond the content and allow tor math connections to real world.

11. Who Wants To Be a Mathematician - Great opportunity to explore mathematical knowledge.

12. Science Talent Search - A great program that allows talented science students to express and demonstrate their talent.

13. Science and Engineering Fair - Intel brings this amazing competition to the STEM field.

14. APP Challenge - Do your students have an idea for an APP? Then look at this competition from Verizon.

15. Biomimicry Challenge - What can living organisms contribute to STEM and engineering? Check it out.

16. Got Game - A challenge devoted to students wanting to create that game.

17. National Science Bowl - The National Department of Energy offers this unique experience.

Next Post… 23 Engaging Formative Learning Resources Perfect For STEM and PBL… Sign Up, Share, and Retweet!

Michael Gorman oversees one-to-one laptop programs and digital professional development for Southwest Allen County Schools near Fort Wayne, Indiana.  He is a consultant for Discovery Education, ISTE, My Big Campus, and November Learning and is on the National Faculty for The Buck Institute for Education.  His awards include  district Teacher of the Year,  Indiana STEM Educator of the Year and Microsoft’s 365 Global Education Hero. Read more at 21centuryedtech.wordpress.com.


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