STEM Enrichment

STEM Enrichment

Two-thirds of children entering elementary school today will work in jobs not yet created, using tools not yet invented, solving problems not yet understood. Opportunities for them to engage new technology is an imperative for future careers and a priority for IPSD204.

IPSD204’s STEM programs transform students from users to creators of technology. IPEF sponsors many of these programs.   Explore the ones that fit your family, and that you would like to help support.

STEM Robotics

“After this robotics experience, I told my dad I want to be an engineer.”

 – Kendall Elementary student

Competitive Robotics teaches students electro-mechanics,  structures, programming and more, and makes it fun. It’s a great ‘hands-on’ introduction to engineering principles involving design, prototyping and testing.  Just as important, it teaches students time management, problem solving, teamwork and how to accept both failure and success.

Nearly 700 students in grades 4-12 participate in IPSD204’s STEM robotics clubs. IPEF and its key partners fund the program’s equipment and software purchases, plus travel and tournament expenses. But we need to do more:

  • Some elementary schools are still without clubs.
  • Clubs turn away more students than they accept due to limited space. 
  • We want to hold more tournaments

Interested in STEM Robotics?

Volunteer to help a robotics club ❤

 

IPSD204 Robotics Tournament

 

Elementary School Robotics

 

High School Robotics

IPSD204 Robotics Tournament

Elementary School Robotics

High School Robotics

Premier Partner

In 2015, the Dunham Fund matched ‘2 for 1’ each dollar IPEF raised for STEM programs. $165,000 was raised in total. Part of that funded expansion of STEM robotics: more teams per school and the first middle school clubs.

2019 – 2020 Sponsors

Become A Sponsor

The STEM Robotics program has ongoing expenses of new and replacement equipment, tournaments and travel. We also wish to add clubs to more elementary schools and expand participation in existing clubs. Help us reach these goals:

Become a Robotics Sponsor  ❤

STEM Teacher Grants

“We bring it to life so students go beyond reading paper in a classroom.”

 – Invited subject matter expert

IPEF has been funding innovative teacher initiatives for over 30 years. Teachers and staff propose novel approaches to enhance classroom curricula, and IPEF funds the most promising ones – anywhere from $500 to $5000. Some of these ideas go on to become permanent parts of the curriculum in a process that refreshes classroom learning.

Each year, several of the proposals, at every grade level, fall under the category of STEM (Science-Technology-Engineering-Math). IPEF now ‘bundles’ these STEM proposals together in our efforts to seek sponsorships. Sponsors like this approach:

  • they see an immediate impact – a program’s duration is one year,
  • their investment touches all grades and groups of students,
  • sponsors can sometimes come into the classroom and see their dollars at work.

 Sponsor STEM Teacher Grants ❤

 

Crime Scene Investigation

 

Saved By A Scientist

 

Hydroponic Garden

Crime Scene Investigation

Saved By A Scientist

Hydroponic Garden

Premier Partner

For 2019, International Paper made a $15,000 donation to IPEF specifically to sponsor the STEM Teacher Grants program. Local IP leaders see the STEM Grants as consistent with IP’s priority for helping children succeed via a comprehensive approach to education.

2019 – 2020 STEM Teacher Grants

Alice IwinskiBrookdale ElementaryRaspberry Pi Coding Club
Christina Ensign
Gombert ElementaryMagnets on the Move
Christina MesserschmidtGombert ElementaryOpen Ended Morning Work STEM Bins
Glenda GustafsonGregory Middle SchoolOrder Up
Rhonda JenkinsKendall ElementaryPodcasting Power:Student Voices
Nicholas MarascoMetea Valley HighInnovative Agriculture STEAM Challenge
Adrianne ToomeyNeuqua Valley HighBiofuels-Saved by a Scientist, Again
Adrianne ToomeyNeuqua Valley HighDNA Demystified
Julie SladeOwen ElementarySTEM Robots
Dawn PopeSpring Brook ElementaryElectricity is a Snap!
Dawn PopeSpring Brook ElementaryHelping Hand Design
Amy ScottStill Middle SchoolFirst-Hand Science for 8th Graders
Katherine WickertStill Middle SchoolFirst-Hand Science

PLTW Engineering

“PLTW takes things you learn in Science and Math and really applies them.”

 – Neuqua Valley High School student

Project Lead The Way (PLTW) is a nationally recognized engineering-track curriculum first adopted by IPSD204 in 2014. PLTW elective classes, offered at both middle school and high school levels, teach students design, functional evaluation, prototyping, testing and documentation.  They are ‘hands-on’ classes that apply principles learned in other STEM classes, helping students build the ‘mental bridge’ between theory and application.

When IPSD204 wanted to introduce the PLTW high school capstone class, a year-long product design class, it turned to IPEF. Purchase of curriculum, equipment, supplies and the culminating student design exhibition all benefited from IPEF support.

IPSD204 will be introducing new PLTW classes and there is an on-going need for workstations, 3D printers, design competitions and field trips. IPEF is ready to support these needs as part of its commitment to STEM excellence.  

  Learn About PLTW Sponsorship  ❤

 

PLTW Capstone Class

PLTW Capstone Class

In 2015, the Dunham Fund matched ‘2 for 1’ each dollar IPEF raised for STEM programs. $165,000 was raised in total – the largest single campaign in IPEF history. Part of that sum was used to fund the startup of the the PLTW ‘Engineering Design and Development’ capstone class in all three district high schools. Neuqua Valley is one of only 64 US high schools to be designated a Project Lead The Way Distinguished School.

 

PLTW Design Showcase

PLTW Design Showcase

STEM-a-Palooza !

“We’ve had hundreds of students doing research in high school. How exciting!”

 – Elaine Modine, Awarded WVHS Teacher

This is the eclectic collection of smaller IPSD204 STEM projects that IPEF has supported over the years. And while they may be small in budget, they are big in their reach:

  • The annual district Science Fair features projects by 1600 students.
  • Elementary and middle school STEM Family nights attract 2200 families.
  • MakerSpaces in school libraries bring 3D printing to all IPSD204 students.
  • Coding clubs and Girls in Engineering, Math & Science (GEMS) focus on girls’ STEM.

IPEF has supported the district Science Fair for 20 years, while other programs just need one time ‘seed funding’ to get started until they become self-sustaining.

These diverse programs are supported through IPEF’s general fund which is, in turn, funded by direct parent donations and the TEAM IPEF fundraiser. Help us keep them going:

Donate to the IPEF General Fund ❤

 

Girls Coding Club

Girls Coding Club

 

Family STEM Night

Family STEM Night

 

MakerSpace in Libraries

MakerSpace in Libraries