STEM, Computer Science, and Digital Citizenship Curricula, Lessons, and Activities
Note: All of the curricula and activities offered require no computer science or programming experience.
Primarily for Pre school and kindergarten children,
The STEM Sprouts Teaching Guide and Parent Tip Sheets are free offerings by the Boston Children’s Museum, which offers exhibits and programs that encourage activity as a means of learning in young children. The guides, available in English and Spanish, instructs educators on focusing and refining the behaviors of three to five-year-olds in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math.
The STEM Sprouts Parent Tip Sheets are to be paired with the corresponding activities.
The BASIS Lesson Plans are K-5 Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) lesson plans of Bay Area Scientists in Schools (BASIS), a Community Resources for Science program that provides free, in-class science lessons led by local scientists and engineers to engage students in hands-on, inquiry based learning while helping teachers discover ways to make science fun, interesting and interactive for children. The lesson plans involve the disciplines of Life Science, Physical Science, Earth and Space Science, and Engineering.
A collaborative project of the University of Colorado Boulder's College of Engineering & Applied Science and Integrated Teaching & Learning Laboratory with funding from the National Science Foundation’s Digital Library Program, Teach Engineering is a digital library collection of over 1,500 standards-based engineering curricula for use by K-12 educators, at no cost, to stimulate applied science and engineering interest in schoolchildren .
Based out of Washington, D.C., eGFI is a program of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), an organization committed to promoting, improving, and deploying K-12 STEM and engineering education in public schools. In their teacher's portal, educators and parents will find free tools, activities, and lesson plans to integrate STEM and engineering education into the classroom.
A San Francisco based non-profit, Common Sense Education provides high-quality digital literacy and citizenship programs to educators and school communities. Their free resources include comprehensive
K–12 Digital Citizenship Curriculum, ready-made lesson plans, videos, and webinars. The Common Sense Education K–12 digital citizenship program includes digital learning resources for students, teachers, and parents. The lesson plans are based on the research of Dr. Howard Gardner and the Good Play Project at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. The program highlights issues and solutions for teachers and students in terms of dealing with the 21st Century digital dilemmas encountered by our schoolchildren . Common Sense Education's resources are also available in Spanish.
Tips and Practical tools and resources for Educators to use to structure and implement coding and computer science programs for students. https://www.commonsense.org/education/teaching-strategies/get-started-with-coding-in-the-classroom
Educators who decide to use Common Sense Digital Citizenship can, at no cost, receive digitally delivered training that involves teaching students the fundamentals of critical thinking and digital citizenship. The training takes approximately an hour to complete. https://www.commonsense.org/education/training
CS First is a Google initiative with the objective of promoting Computer Science education, especially to K-12 schoolchildren, by introducing them to the programming language Scratch, a user-friendly, block-based (drag and drop) programming language and providing educators and parents with curriculum, lesson plans, activities and digital material available for use at no cost.
Established in 2002 by British industrial designer and founder of the Dyson company, Sir James Dyson. The James Dyson Foundation has a mission of encouraging the interest and development of schoolchildren into engineers, industrial designers, and other technology professionals. In doing so, they provide a wealth of free resources to schools, such as the Design Process and Engineering boxes and other tools and activities that educators can integrate into the classroom.
The Exploratorium is an educational museum in San Francisco that emphasizes inquiry based learning as a mode for visitors and individuals to become more knowledgeable about art, science, and technology. Through outreach programs such as The Teacher Institute and XTech, Exploratorium seeks to find innovative ways to provide professional development to educators while encouraging the engagement of students in STEM activities. Provided is the link to Exploratorium's free educator resources and STEM activities to engage students curiosity and interests in STEM subjects through experiments.
National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network or NNNI is now transitioning into NNCI or the National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure is an NSF funded organization which promotes education, research and development into nanotechnology, the science of studying structures at the atomic and molecular levels. Available at no cost are curriculum, activities, and other tools that educators can integrate into existing lessons due to the broadness of the science of nanotechnology.
EverFI Inc. is a DC based nonprofit organization that specializes in providing digital learning to K-12 schools, universities, and businesses, offers free digital tools and resources with immediate availability for K-12 teachers to use to encourage STEM and real world skills development in schoolchildren.
A Peach State Innovation and Technology community partner,
Girls Who Code is a nonprofit organization with the objective of closing the gender gap in technology by equipping young women with the requisite computing skills to pursue opportunities in computer science and technology. GWC hosts a seven-week summer immersion program, a two-week specialized campus program, and free after-school coding clubs for organizations and school districts specifically geared toward school age girls in grades 3 - 12. For the after-school programs, GWC provides all the requisite tools and curriculum to the club facilitators at zero cost with no technical and coding experience required of the facilitator.
If interested in establishing a free coding club, any club in our network is eligible to receive additional partnership benefits by indicating Peach State Innovation and Technology on their Clubs application. To begin the application process, follow the link below:
Code.org is a non-profit organization headquartered in Seattle, Washington whose purpose is to facilitate computer science skills learning and development in individuals, particularly school children Pre K - 12. Code.org's curriculum coincide with the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) standards, and with national Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) Math, English Language Arts, and Science standards. View the full standards alignment document for CS Fundamentals Courses A-F. All material is available for free to educators to use at their discretion.
A direct link to Code.org's Computer Science Coding catalogs with digital coursework, lessons, and activities:
A project of the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at the MIT Media Lab, Scratch is a block-based, visual programming language for, but not exclusive to, children. Using Scratch, students create their own interactive stories, games, animations and develop the critical skills needed in today’s world.
Corresponding with the Scratch programming language is an Introduction to Creative Computing with the Scratch programming language curriculum. Available at no cost and in 9 different languages, this guide was developed by members of the ScratchEd research team at the Harvard Graduate School of Education to facilitate educators implementation of lesson plans and activities relative to teaching Scratch to schoolchildren. http://scratched.gse.harvard.edu/guide/download.html
The Los Altos, California based company’s platform is considered to be the best platform to teach children coding, Tynker offers free to educators its’ programming starter courses (100 for grades 3-5, 300 for grades 6 -8) along with lessons and activities.
Made with Code is an initiative began by Google in 2014 with the mission of directing middle and high school girls into computer science by learning and developing coding skills. Made with Code’s modules use Blockly programming, which is a visual editor that writes programs by assembling individual blocks.
Maintained by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
MIT App Inventor is a free block based, visual programming environment that allows everyone, including children, to build fully functional apps for smartphones and tablets. Provided for educators and parents are curricula such as Mobile CSP, a College Board-endorsed AP Computer Science Principles curriculum based on the theme of mobile computing, plus additional lessons, and activities which provide instruction and facilitate teaching application development using MIT App Inventor to schoolchildren.