Spokane Public Schools ‘STEM kits’ giving students a hands-on science activity at home

SPOKANE, Wash. — With STEM kits, learning science and engineering doesn’t have to stop at home.

Spokane Public Schools are rolling out these kits every two weeks for students of any grade level to take on different building project challenges.

A couple of science teachers started STEM kits a few years ago as an optional learning activity, but now they’re helping students stay busy and stay learning while they’re at home.

Students and families can pick them up at each SPS meal pick-up site.

Each kit has common household materials inside that students can use to complete a building challenge.

The first challenge asked students to create a model of a Washington State Park.

About 50 kits went out to each meal pick-up site for this challenge and the students shared their creations via email to the science teachers.

“There’s an email where you can post your pictures and within 20 to 30 minutes of getting their kit, they’re already sharing like ‘This is what we did!,” said SPS science specialist Melissa Pearcy.

You can email your finished project to her at melissape@spokaneschools.org.

Families can also use their own household items as the challenges are posted on the Spokane Public Schools website.

“The materials are basic household items like paper cups, paper plates, straws,” said SPS science specialist Kelly Kielian. “Really any material that the student wants to use, they’re welcome to do that and still complete the challenge, so the whole goal is for problem-solving and creativity.”

The most recent challenge had students build their own greenhouse.

The science teachers and volunteers that are spearheading the project say the demand is growing for the kits and they could use the community’s help in raising money for the materials on GoFundMe.

“Your contributions will go to buying things like paper bags, cups, pipe cleaners, felt, craft sticks, foil, etc. These are items that may not necessarily be available at all houses. These materials would need to be purchased so we can have kits available by April 30th,” said Pearcy on the GoFundMe page.

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