Programs & Resources
Below are some downloadable activities designed by Carnegie Mellon University faculty and staff that you can use at home or in your classroom. While some activities have been designed for a specific age group, all can be adapted to fit any age, Elementary School (ES), Middle School (MS) or High School (HS).
The activities in this unit have been designed to help students in middle or high school develop an understanding of brownfields; causes of brownfields, why we should be concerned about brownfields, and efforts that have been established to remediate problems in brownfield sites. Photographs of common brownfields, such as abandoned gas stations, industrial plants and agricultural sites are included to help students understand that brownfields are not a problem that can be found everywhere.
DNAZone Activities (MS, HS)
DNAZone and the University of Pittsburgh's Chemistry Department have partnered to create classroom kits for grades 4-12. The kits are designed to help middle school and high school teachers bring science, technology, engineering and math into their classrooms in a fun and exciting way. Lesson plans and student activity sheets for each classroom kit can be downloaded here. The kits, which contain all of the necessary materials for a teacher-led science experiment and lesson, are available free of charge from the lending library.
In conjunction with the National Science Foundation's Climate and Energy Decision Making Center, the SUCCEED curricula has been adapted into K-12 lesson plans on climate, energy and environment meeting Pennsylvania standards.
SAFE-Net (ES, MS, HS)
SAFE-Net aims to educate students, parents and educators on cyber threats, methods of security and ethics. The materials provided here are to teach these groups about issues in cyber security.
Macromolecular Products (ES, MS, HS)
The content of this website is meant to be used to familiarize the science educator with the concept of a polymer (macromolecule), the unusual properties of polymers, and to make them aware of the usefulness of these materials which are found in many products we use in our everyday lives. The information and activities provided show how scientists and engineers work together to create new products and processes using new materials discovered through chemistry.
Below are some of the programs that Carnegie Mellon offers for students aged elementary through high school. Each program is labeled for either Elementary School (ES), Middle School (MS) or High School (HS)
Each spring, the Institute for Complex Engineered Systems (ICES) hosts Moving 4th Into Engineering, an engineering outreach event. Approximately 25 fourth-grade students from various Pittsburgh area schools are invited to visit Carnegie Mellon's campus and participate in a full day of science activities. This program provides the students with an interactive introduction to the exciting world of engineering. Through various experiments and exercises, students learn how engineering plays a part in many of the ordinary things they see every day. Moving 4th aims to inspire young students to seek out future studies in math, science and engineering. A diverse group of ICES faculty, staff and student volunteers lead the program and work with the children throughout the day.
Contact: Alicia Angemeer
Strong Women, Strong Girls is a group-based mentoring program that uses the study of contemporary women role models, mentoring relationships between college-aged women and girls in grades three to five and activities focused on skill-building to help enhance the lives of at-risk girls. Through building positive self-esteem and skills for life-long success, Strong Women, Strong Girls is working to strengthen the futures of all women and girls involved in the program. Approximately 25 women at Carnegie Mellon serve as mentors for more than 70 girls in the Pittsburgh area. Carnegie Mellon partners with five different local elementary schools and community centers as programming sites. Each week, smaller teams of mentors travel to the sites to engage and work with the girls.
The Summer Engineering Experience (SEE) is a two-week summer experience for girls entering the 8th and 9th grades who are interested in math and science. SEE gives girls hands-on experience in different forms of engineering. The theme of SEE is "Energy," and girls have an opportunity to learn about different forms of energy that are efficient and environmentally friendly. They explore forms of energy that interest them and learn how they can make a difference through engineering.
Contact: Alicia Angemeer
High School and Middle School Day is an annual event in which the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) invites approximately 250 Pittsburgh middle and high school girls to CMU's campus. It is one of SWE's largest outreach events and collaborates with CMU professors and students from various campus organizations. The girls are able to participate in activities related to electrical, mechanical, civil, biomedical, material science and chemical engineering. The event aims to help young girls get a better idea of what engineering entails and offers them guidance and advice for pursuing engineering, while allowing CMU students and faculty to share their knowledge and passion for engineering and inspire young women.
Contact: Nisha Shukla
Held annually, SUCCEED consists of two pilot programs: a 2-day workshop to improve teacher curricula and a free 5-day summer school targeting students entering 10th grade. In conjunction with the National Science Foundation’s Climate and Energy Decision Making Center, we have adapted the SUCCEED curricula into K-12 lesson plans on climate, energy, and environment meeting Pennsylvania standards.
Contact: Parth Vaishnav
Students from the Allegheny Intermediate Unit participating in its Apprenticeship Program have the opportunity to explore different areas of engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, which include civil, chemical, electrical and computer, engineering and public policy, environmental, materials science, and mechanical. Students will tour labs and see the cutting-edge technology that is being developed by faculty and students, and they will also have an opportunity to engage in hands-on experiments related to the research being done on campus.
Contact: Alicia Angemeer
SPARK Saturdays (HS)
SPARK Saturdays is a Saturday workshop series created by volunteers studying Electrical and Computer Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University that aims to introduce beginners to concepts about electrical and computer engineering and expose them to engineering as a potential career choice. Topics include, but are not limited to, Mechanical Logic, Programming, Smart Light, and Radio Building. Applicants must be high school students, able to attend all sessions, and be able to pay a fee of $5 to reserve space in the program. Registrations are submitted by August each year.
Because of limited space (40 spaces), students will be admitted on a first-come-first-serve basis. We also ask that you please only register your child if they have had experience with no more than one of the following topics: computer programming, boolean logic, breadboarding, and making simple circuits.
See http://eceoutreach.ece.cmu.edu/index.html for additional information.
- The Leonard Gelfand Center : Carnegie Mellon University's service learning and outreach program hub.
- Mellon College of Science Outreach : The programs led by MCS faculty, include shows for science assemblies, projects for middle school students and summer program opportunities.
- School of Computer Science : The School of Computer Science is dedicated to STEM outreach in the local community.
- AAA Math : Math games and practice, divided both by topic and grade level.
- The Academy of Natural Sciences : Discover what an "ichthyologist" does, create your own oyster reef and complete a watershed crossword courtesy of this Philadelphia museum.
- The American Ceramics Society : The American Ceramics Society provides educational news and resources to advance the study, understanding and use of ceramic and glass materials.
- American Society for Engineering Education eGFI : Provides of tools to boost students' math and science skills, introduce engineering projects into the classroom and expand teachers' professional horizons.
- Braincake : For girls age 11-17 who are interested in math and science.
- The Carnegie Science Center : Interactive science museum offering programs for parents, teachers, and students K-12.
- Challenger Center : Space-related activities, resources and programs.
- The Children's Museum of Pittsburgh : Provides a variety of programming for kids across all disciplines.
- Discover Engineering : Learn how important engineering is in the development of everyday objects (like snowboards!) and find out about what real engineers do!
- The Discovery School: Lesson plans and activities courtesy of the Discovery Channel in a variety of topics, including astronomy, forensic science, health, life science, physical science and technology.
- Eisenhower National Clearinghouse: Science and math related articles and activities.
- Engineering is Elementary: Supports educators and children with curricula and professional development that develop engineering literacy.
- Engineergirl : Provides information and activities to foster an interest in engineering in young girls.
- The Franklin Institute Online : Learn about everything from the human heart to airplanes to the weather, all on this one great site!
- How Stuff Works : Describes how many everyday items function—divided into computers, automobiles, electronics, science, home, entertainment, health, money, travel and people.
- Integrating Math with Science : Activities that integrate math and science.
- Mechanical Engineering : Activities for elementary and secondary students designed by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
- National Council of Teachers of Mathematics
- National Education Association: List of the 10 Best STEM Resources for all school ages.
- Next Generation Science Standards: Through a collaborative, state-led process managed by Achieve, new K–12 science standards have been developed that are rich in content and practice and arranged in a coherent manner across disciplines and grades to provide all students an internationally-benchmarked science education.
- The National Institutes for Health : Resources for teachers include curriculum supplements, a science fair project resource guide, and a speakers' bureau of NIH employees available to speak to school groups.
- National Science Foundation: List of Engineering classroom Resources from the National Science Foundation.
- National Science Teachers Association
- NOVA : Information in a variety of science areas including anthropology, disasters, exploration, flight, forensics, health, nature, space and technology.
- Ology : Gives considerable information about areas of study (most of which end with the –ology suffix) categorized under broad headings of paleontology, astronomy, Einstein's theories, biodiversity, genetics and marine biology.
- The Pittsburgh Technology Council : Provides STEM-related events to the Greater Pittsburgh Area.
- Pittsburgh Regional Science and Engineering Fair (PRSEF): As the only local International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) affiliated fair, PRSEF nominates Senior Division students to attend ISEF.
- Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science (PJAS) Regional Science Fair: The Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science holds an annual, regional science fair. Check website for details.
- A Sightseer's Guide to Engineering : Lists a variety of engineering marvels throughout the United States, grouped by the state in which they are located.
- STEM Careers: Resources for parents to help them support their children in pursuit of STEM careers.
- STEM Jobs: Articles and information on jobs in the STEM fields presented in an interesting and engaging way.
- Teach Engineering : Provides standards-based engineering lessons and hands-on activities for use in science, engineering and math classrooms.
- Try Engineering: Engineering related games and lesson plans, and help finding universities and majors in STEM related fields.
- Try Science : 400 science centers around the world contribute to this ever-changing collection of online adventures and experiments you can try at home.
- U.S. Department of Energy : The people at the Department of Energy provide you with lots of fun math and science games. Find out how many arithmetic problems you can solve in 60 seconds, play "Science Vocabulary Hangman" and more.
- U.S. Energy Information Administration Kids : Resources and information on energy science from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.