There are a plethora of high-quality curricula and programs available for use in afterschool programs. While it is not possible for us to list all the available resources, here are a few compilations of curricula, activities, and programs below that can get you started.
- Consumers Guide to Afterschool Science Resources: A searchable guide to high-quality hands-on science curricula that have been reviewed by content experts and afterschool providers. [A mixture of free and for-purchase curricula]
- Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE): A National Science Foundation funded project that provides an online collection of the best math and science activities designed especially for out-of-school-time settings. [Free]
- Thinkfinity from Verizon Foundation: Lesson Plans and Educational Resources [Free]
- Design Squad from WGBH in Boston: Designed to teach 9-12 year olds about engineering design through 27 hands-on challenges with step-by-step instructions in both English and Spanish. [Free] ; Check out the online workshop for educators and afterschool leaders.
- From NASA:
- 4-H Science Programs: 4-H is making a bold push to engage one million new young people in science programs by 2013 and has a set of high-quality curricula you can download from their website or order online.
- FIRST Robotics: In addition to curricula, there are many national STEM competitions that inspire children and youth and provide a compelling demonstration of how science is applied in the real world. FIRST Robotics is the premier robotics competition for young people designed to inspire them in STEM through mentor-based programs that build skills and inspire critical-thinking and problem-solving skills.