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Best STEM Books of 2017

Pam Lottero-Perdue best STEM booksLooking for inspiring literature about STEM that not only is good reading but accurately depicts complex content? Responding to continued calls from teachers, the National Science Teachers Association just published such a “best books” list. And American Society for Engineering Education members helped develop it with the ‘E’ in mind!

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NASA Space Spinoff Contest

NASA tech innovation posterNASA’s second annual OPSPARC Challenge asks students in grades 3 to 12 to identify everyday items that were first developed for a space mission and then imagine a new humanitarian purpose for that technology. Deadline for submission is February 10, 2017.

That question lies at the heart of NASA’s Optimus Prime Spinoff and Research Challenge, a contest that asks students in grades 3 to 12 to identify and dream up a new purpose for technology first developed for a space mission.

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Engineer Girl Essay Contest

endangered black footed ferret“Engineering and Animals” is the theme for the National Academy of Engineering’s 2017 EngineerGirl! Essay Contest. Students in grades 3 to 12 are asked to choose an endangered animal – like this black-footed ferret – and consider how engineering might improve life for that species. Submissions are due Feb. 1, 2017.

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Vernier Contest

Vernier engineering contest bridge buildingMiddle and high school STEM teachers can win up to $5,500 in cash, technology, and funds to cover the cost of attending either the 2017 ASEE or NSTA annual conference in Vernier Software & Technology’s engineering contest. Apply by February 15, 2017.

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MIT THINK Scholars Program

idea light bulb MIT THINKMIT’s THINK Scholars Program is an educational outreach initiative run by undergraduates that supports and funds STEM projects developed by high school students. Six finalists are chosen to visit the campus, with three selected to receive up to $1,000 in seed money to complete their projects. Deadline for submitting proposals is January 1, 2016.

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eCybermission 2017

eCybermission 2013 teamTired of plastic action toys? In eCybermission, an Internet-based science fair, students in grades 6 to 9 can play real super-spy detectives. Entries are due February 22, 2017.

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No Phishing! Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2016

Cybersecurity password theftThe Department of Homeland Security designates October as National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Its “Stop, Think, Connect” toolkit includes materials for various audiences, including students and educators, as well as guides to social media, phishing, and other topics.

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Every Kid in a Park

Every Kid in a Park New Melones LakeTo celebrate its 100th birthday and engage the next century’s environmentalists, the National Park Service is opening parks to 4th graders and their teachers and parents for free. Every Kid in a Park includes trip planning tools and teacher activity guides. No time or funds for field trips? Take a virtual tour of the Grand Canyon or explore resources for teaching history to citizen science.

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Summer Research Program for H.S. Students

SEAP studentsApplications are now open for the Science and Engineering Apprenticeship Program (SEAP), a paid summer research program for high school students administered by the American Society for Engineering Education. Sophomores, juniors, and seniors are selected to spend eight weeks working alongside professional engineers and research scientists on real projects at one of 27 Department of Navy labs around the country. Apply by November 30, 2016.

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