Making STEM Connections

Making STEM Connections brings the Maker Movement into the classroom. Students will explore STEM principles and 21st Century skills as they design, create and make. The program enhances teachers' already developed curriculum with hands-on, minds-on applications.

A classroom using the Making STEM Connections kit might have students learning how to fuse plastic bags and bubble wrap to create textiles. Students could combine art with science by creating a mark-making tool using batteries, a DC motor and markers. Within a maker’s space, students will learn to use a variety of tools including a drill for assembling projects as well as deconstructing materials.

Making STEM Connections allows educators to develop a maker’s space in their learning environment. The program provides teachers with training on tool usage and safety as well as lesson prompts and non-fiction resources.


NGSS Connections

Making STEM Connections is a multilevel program that addresses problem solving and real world application. The newly adopted Next Generation Science Standards bring light to the need for students to engage in critical thinking and engineering practices in addition to academic knowledge. Making STEM Connections works to address many of the Cross Cutting Concepts and Science and Engineering Practices as well as Disciplinary Core Ideas that are brought forth by NGSS for grades K-6.

View NGSS Connections


What is Making?

Making is all about tinkering, building, experimenting and collaborating to solve problems. It can mean taking things apart and putting them back together. It can mean linking science and art to build structures that are equally efficient and aesthetically beautiful. At the Science Center of Iowa, Making means encouraging participants of all ages to see familiar objects in new, innovative ways, developing the collaborative mindset and skills necessary for the modern STEM world. 

Developing and encouraging Makers through the "maker mindset" is a critical step in developing Iowa’s innovation ecosystem and most importantly, developing a diverse workforce for the 21st Century. Making is a hands-on, all-ages invitation to explore science, technology, engineering and math - or STEM. In connecting Making activities to STEM careers, Making introduces people of all ages to the skills and problem-solving techniques they can apply in a modern workforce that’s demanding more and more STEM professionals.  

Tiny Circus video:

Des Moines Mini Maker Faire video:


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