STEM Curriculum



Magnets Like to Move It, Move It

Grades: 2
Industry: Power and Propulsion
Content Area: Government, History, Measurement and Data, Physical Science, Speaking and Listening

These scientific investigations will engage students in understanding the force of magnetism and how this force can be used for work.  The students will begin the unit by forming generalizations about magnets and their forces through their own knowledge and scientific investigations.  The students will explore the variations between different magnet strengths.  Finally, the students […]

Using Nanoparticles to Deliver Targeted Chemotherapy Drugs

Grades: 10, 11, 12, 9
Industry: Advanced Manufacturing and Materials, Human Performance and Medicine, Sensors
Content Area: Biology, Geometry, Number and Quantity, Speaking and Listening, Technology, Writing

Cancer is a part of our daily lives. The treatment for most cancer patients is usually achieved through aggressive chemotherapy.  Unfortunately this treatment has major side effects as it destroys not only the cancer cells but also the non-cancerous cells around it. Is there a method of treating cancer using nanotechnology to help target just […]

Fractured Fairy Tales- Composites to the Rescue!

Grades: K, Pre K
Industry: Advanced Manufacturing and Materials
Content Area: Counting and Cardinality, Government, Literature, Measurement and Data, Observations of Objects and Materials, Speaking and Listening, Writing

Grades: PreK -K In this unit, students will conduct scientific investigations and use the engineering design process to solve a problem related to the Three Little Pigs. The scientific investigations will engage students in understanding composite materials and how they improve the performance of an end product.  The students will form generalizations using their prior […]

What’s All the Commotion about Erosion

Grades: 4
Industry: Environmental Engineering
Content Area: Design, Earth and Space Sciences, Engineering, Geography, Measurement and Data, Social Studies Skills and Methods, Speaking and Listening, Writing

Grade: 4 River erosion is the removal of rock material from the banks and bed of a river.  In this unit, students will use a physical model of a river bed to determine the causes of erosion and will brainstorm ways to prevent it within their model.  Concepts of environmental engineering will be applied to […]

Dig Up the Volume

Grades: 5
Industry: Sensors
Content Area: Geometry, Measurement and Data, Nature of Technology, Speaking and Listening, Technology and Society Interaction

In this unit students will be engineering a systematic strategy for determining the volume of several rectangular prisms without actually being able to see them.  Student groups will be given several boxes which contain different sized rectangular prisms.  The lids of these boxes will have a coordinate grid which extends into all four quadrants.  Each […]

Bending Light to Communicate

Grades: 10, 11, 12, 9
Industry: Advanced Manufacturing and Materials, Sensors
Content Area: Algebra, Design, Design Process, Designed World, Functions, Geometry, Nature of Technology, Physical Science, Physics, Reading: Informational Text, Statistics and Probability, Technical Communication, Technology, Technology and Communication Applications, Technology and Information Literacy, Writing

Lasers can be used for many purposes such as targeting and communication. Light is refracted (“bent”) as it travels from one medium to another.  This can be demonstrated by a straw appearing to be “bent” when placed into a glass of water. Throughout this inquiry STEM lesson, student will have students investigate and apply lasers, […]

Fire Safety Impact Systems

Grades: 6, 7, 8
Industry: Advanced Manufacturing and Materials, Human Performance and Medicine, Sensors
Content Area: Design, Design Process, Engineering, Expressions and Equations, Nature of Technology, Physical Science, Ratios and Proportional Relationships, Reading: Informational Text, Writing

In this unit, students will explore the relationships between force, motion, and gravity as they team up with Underwriters Laboratories to create a prototype for use in emergency situations, such as a house fire, to break a person’s fall. Teams of students will work collaboratively to employ the engineering design process as they design an […]

Moving On Up

Grades: 11, 12
Industry: Advanced Manufacturing and Materials, Environmental Engineering
Content Area: Algebra, Contemporary World Issues, Creating Equations, Design, Design Process, Designed World, Physical Science, Reading: Informational Text, Speaking and Listening, Statistics, Technology, Writing

Teams of students will design and build a model for a transportation system in the Virunga Mountains. Student learning will focus on science (physics of simple machines), math (statistics and modeling), language arts (technical writing) and history (African people and mountain ranges) to solve this problem.

It’s NOT Easy Being Green Algae!

Grades: 10, 11
Industry: Agricultural Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Power and Propulsion
Content Area: Contemporary World Issues, Design, Design Process, Designed World, Earth Systems, Engineering, Environmental Science, Government, Life Science, Reading: Informational Text, Statistics, Technology, Visual Arts, Writing

After being initially exposed to the basics of photosynthesis and cellular respiration, student teams design an algae growth chamber focusing primarily on producing large quantities of algae.  Teams collect and measure algae on a daily basis, and research uses of algae for a sustainable fuel source.  In order to inform the public about the potential […]

Around the Windows: Looking Through Stained Glass

Grades: 7
Industry: Advanced Manufacturing and Materials, Environmental Engineering
Content Area: Design, Design Process, Energy and Waves, Engineering, Environmental Science, Expressions and Equations, Geometry, History, Physical Science, Reading: Informational Text, Technical Communication, Technology, Writing

Students ware engaged in various inquiries to build an understanding of wavelengths and energy transfer.  They also incorporate geometry, problem solving, writing, early civilization influences, and technology skills.  Teams of students create a stained glass window jar in order to discover which light wave is most efficient in reducing the effect of the classroom temperature. […]

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