Your Search for Out of School STEM Programs Starts Here!
With Spring Break peeking around the corner, Blueprint4 is excited to announce our latest adventure with STEMSTL. Later this summer we are adding Blueprint4STEM to our Blueprint4 family of platforms, giving St. Louis area families a fast, easy, and free way to find Out of School STEM programs for K-12 kids. If you’re looking for extra learning resources or healthy and safe activities for your child during spring break, winter break, or before and after school, Blueprint4STEM will have you covered!
Check Out These Amazing Spring Break STEM Programs
These incredible spring break programs are a terrific example of the kinds of Out of School STEM opportunities you’ll be able to find through Blueprint4STEM. Spring will be here before the new app launches, so follow the links below to sign up your child before it’s too late!
Saint Louis Zoo
Ever wonder how cats can see at night? Or how snakes smell with their tongues? Many animals have super senses to help them survive in their habitats. We will explore the fascinating world of animal senses of sight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste! We’ll meet animals with extreme abilities, do experiments to learn how our senses work, and create fun animal crafts. This is a virtual program. Additional program information including the Zoom website link will be sent later.
The Butterfly House
The Butterfly House has a variety of opportunities this spring for ages ranging from pre-K to 8th grade. In the Super Bugs series, you’ll get to meet a new Super Bug every month and learn all about their amazing abilities. Wings of Wonder will show your kids the process of metamorphosis while practicing scientific observation. Along with many other activities and opportunities for kids, The Butterfly House will also be hosting a Firefly Festival and a Dragonfly Festival this spring for an evening adventure to learn the science behind these insects!
St. Louis Public Library
The St. Louis Public Library has a variety of STEM opportunities for kids anywhere from age 3-15. In “Oh, The Thinks You Can Think” you’ll learn about the human brain and push the limits of your imagination as you write poetry, compose musics, explore inventors and create your own inventions! Discover the magic of science in Fun Physics as you explore planes, bridges, whirlwinds, gyroscopes, and electricity. Check out their catalogue of virtual camps to learn more about these opportunities and MANY more!
The Green Center
The Green Center has many fun opportunities awaiting kids in 2nd-5th grade this spring! Their Art & Nature class gives kids an opportunity to explore Missouri’s native habitats while also using materials they find in nature to create art projects. In Get Outdoors, you’ll discover new ways to play outside using tools to investigate signs of spring! The Green Center is also offering a Green Chef class, where kids will learn all about spring gardening and how to use what they grow to make delicious food.
Bricks 4 Kidz
Bricks 4 Kidz is offering a 6 week long after-school camp this spring. Students will build LEGO technic pieces, gears, axels and motors while learning about STEM concepts and improve spatial 3D understanding, volume, and other math and engineering concepts.
CyberUp Wednesday Webinar
Join CyberUp every other week for their Wednesday Webinar, where they’ll give you a one-hour introduction into various topics of the cybersecurity world along with special guest speakers!
CyberUp PowerUp: Cyber Games Season 2
Cyber Games is an exciting monthly opportunity for middle and high schoolers where students will compete individually or in teams of up to 4 people in a gamified learning environment. They will learn the same skills, knowledge, and tools that are used by cyber professionals, making them invaluable to future employers. This competition series is both educational and fun for everyone!
Why Focus On Out of School Time?
It’s more than what happens in the classroom that adds up to a student receiving a great education. Kids keep learning around the clock — what’s in your child’s Out of School lesson plan?
Out of School time includes after school, before school, spring break, winter break, holidays, and all other time students spend outside the classroom. Providing fun and diverse Out of School time (OST) learning opportunities helps to ensure that youth will develop their own creative pursuits, expand their education, and prepare for career success.
OST programs are supervised activities that kids regularly attend when school is not in session. They offer safety, supervision, and learning opportunities while building important personal and social skills. OST programs may be provided by schools themselves or through local organizations, hospitals, churches, community centers, libraries, parks, and museums. Families are often surprised by the variety of OST programming options that are available and how cost-effective OST programs can be when compared to other types of childcare.
Why Are STEM Programs So Important?
In our increasingly complex world, it is crucial that our youth are prepared with knowledge and skills to identify and solve problems, gather and analyze information, and make evidence-based decisions. These are skills that students develop in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics programs, collectively known as STEM. STEM education teaches critical thinking, logical analysis, and problem-solving through hands-on experiences while preparing students for in-demand, highly valued careers.
Because STEM is so important to the future, equitable access to STEM learning is an important focus for many organizations. As the U.S. Department of Education says, “A child’s zip code should not determine their STEM literacy and educational options.” We must ensure that no matter where children live, they have access to quality STEM learning opportunities. Improving access means providing more STEM learning opportunities, which can be achieved by incorporating STEM into more areas of a child’s learning environment, including Out of School time.
The St. Louis Regional STEM Learning Ecosystem (STEMSTL) is a collaborative consortium committed to equitable access to high-quality STEM learning and employment opportunities for all learners in the St. Louis metro region. They focus on ensuring that children, youth, and adult learners of all backgrounds and identities (especially gender and race) have equitable access to and opportunity to participate in high-quality STEM learning. STEMSTL has been a leader in providing STEM education resources and programming in St. Louis since 2015 – the very same year we launched the Blueprint4 platform.
The Blueprint4 Platform
Blueprint4 is all about planning for success. That means preparing today’s learners for the roles and responsibilities of tomorrow. Science and technology is at the center of the future, which makes STEM education very important.
Our Blueprint4 platform is designed to be an easy-to-use mobile tool that connects ALL young people to a wide array of learning opportunities. We started with Blueprint4Summer St. Louis in 2015 to help families quickly and easily find local summer camp programs. We have expanded our vision over the years to include search apps for College Prep and Career Training programs, too. Throughout all of these endeavors we’ve observed a common trend – the growing demand for STEM-related programs. STEMSTL summer camps have consistently ranked among the most popular camp programs searched and found in the Blueprint4Summer St. Louis app.
Blueprint4STEM Launches Summer 2021
This year, Blueprint4 and STEMSTL are enhancing our longtime partnership to embark on a new shared mission: ensuring that all young people in Saint Louis have access to high-quality out of school STEM learning programs. Together we are promoting Out of School opportunities to boost STEM education and prepare today’s kids for the roles of the future in the St. Louis region.
Local families will be able to use the new Blueprint4STEM app to easily find programs, get information, and plan for fun and productive Out of School time. Search for programs near you, programs with pickup or transportation services, virtual online programs, and more. Look up programs that fit your budget or search for free programs and those that offer scholarships. Find all the info you need for free in one simple, central place.
Using Blueprint4STEM will be easy and free. The app will work just like the other Blueprint4 apps:
- Click SEARCH SESSIONS to begin.
- Select your search criteria and click the SEARCH button. You can search programs first, or dive right in to a full list of all available sessions that match your search criteria.
- Click on the results listings and explore links to learn more about the opportunities available for your child.
- Create a Blueprint4STEM account to save your favorites and use our app’s free planning and scheduling tools.
- Visit program providers’ websites to register when you’re ready.