Million Girls Moonshot
The Iowa Million Girls Moonshot Minute
November 2021
Welcome to the Iowa Million Girls Moonshot Minute! This monthly publication from the Iowa Afterschool Alliance provides dozens of STEM out-of-school time professional development opportunities and activities to strengthen the quality of programs across the state. We hope that you find these resources valuable! Learn more about the national Million Girls Moonshot movement here.
Million Girls Moonshot Resources
STEM Transforming Communities
Featured Webinars
Engineering Mindsets
Lessons Learned from Equity and Inclusion Community of Practice
November 16 at 1 p.m. CST
Join Iowa Afterschool Alliance's own Crystal Hall and additional panelists from across the country discussing the successes and challenges they have related to implementing equitable approaches within their network and programs. Million Girls Moonshot hosted a Community of Practice focused on Equity and Inclusion for afterschool networks during summer 2021, led by the National Girls Collaborative Project. This session will recap best practices and how they are being put into action.

Celebrate Computer Science Education Week with the IF/THEN Collection
December 7 at 1 p.m. CST
Looking for new computer science and engineering activities? The IF/THEN® Collection is a free digital library designed to inspire the next generation of girls to pursue STEM careers and features activities and videos of real women STEM professionals. Join us as we explore resources in the IF/THEN® Collection to promote computer science and engineering in afterschool programs.

Curiosity Machine Design Challenges
Looking for hands-on project-based STEM activities for your students? Technovation guides you through a suite of free design challenges on their Curiosity Machine website. In this training, they practiced some design challenges and tested their understanding of the different ways we can facilitate these design challenges.

Introducing Artificial Intelligence Using Curiosity Machine 
Artificial intelligence can be fun, hands-on, and connected to real life, even for kids. In this training for educators of upper elementary or middle school students, Technovation showcased their Curiosity Machine artificial intelligence lessons. With these free lessons, help your students learn, play and create solutions to real-world problems with Al.

Exploration and Awareness of Careers that use an Engineering Mindset: The Possible Futures Curriculum Part I 
Thinking as young professionals, students are introduced to the design process, develop problem-solving and research skills, and learn to foster an engineering and growth mindset. JFF, a national nonprofit aimed at promoting economic advancement for all, designed the Possible Futures curriculum with a focus on STEM to help rethink how youth start to explore college and career options and to prepare them to make meaningful decisions about their future. Get ready for interactive sessions that are designed to be a supportive learning community!

Role Models and Mentoring
Role Models Matter Training for STEM Volunteers
Ready to train volunteers and role models in your network, school, or afterschool program? Gain access to the Role Models Matter training developed by Techbridge Girls today.

Quality Trainings
PEAR Dimensions of Success (DoS) Certification Training
November 17-18 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. CST

PEAR Dimensions of Success (DoS) Recertification Training
November 30 from 12-3 p.m. CST

ACRES November Cohort: Modeling Math Practices
November 15 and December 16 from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. CST

ACRES Demeber Cohort: Developing STEM Identities and Making Career Connections
December 2, 9 and 16 from 5:30-8 p.m. CST
Transformative Practices
Equity & Inclusion
Article: Infrastructures to Support Equitable STEM Learning Across Settings - STEM learning is a process that unfolds through dynamic interactions over time and across settings. Learn about design principles to support equitable learning across settings, especially opportunities that occur in out-of-school time.

Toolkit: Broadening Perpsectives in Broadening Participation in STEM Toolkit, Developed by CAISE - To help informal STEM education and science communication groups reflect on and strengthen their efforts to broaden participation in STEM, CAISE’s Broadening Participation in STEM Task Force has developed a suite of professional development tools to plan and lead reflective discussions about current practices, with an eye to developing goals, strategies, and priorities that can make your ISE and science communication work more inclusive.

Engineering Mindsets
Article: The Mathephant in the Room - Research is beginning to emerge on areas in which students seem to be experiencing the largest loss due to the pandemic. Initial findings suggest that math may be at the top of the list. Learn how program providers can look at ways that we can help to close those gaps and foster an engineering mindset through parent and caregiver involvement.

Website: DiscoverE | Engineering activities for kids, resources for teachers and volunteers and more! - Build a beverage holder that won’t hurt the environment, learn about the many careers in engineering, and meet an engineering role model in a short video.

Incorporating Role Models
Focused on National Aviation Month (Nov. 2021)
The below assets are free profile videos and photos of IF/THEN Ambassadors. These can be used in marketing, presentations, social media, embedded on websites, during conferences, and so much more.

For Families
Toolkit: Engaging Families in Mathematics - Families are a child’s first educator and this role does not halt on day one of school. Families lay the foundation for future educational success. Researchers have identified four best practices for engaging families effectively in mathematics education.

Article: 10X: Using Technology to Engage Families - From gathering information to modeling appropriate tech use to emphasizing the importance of conversation with children, learn 10 tips on using technology to engage families.

STEM Transitions, Handoffs, and Coordination
Research to Practice: Designing Learning Pathways: A research-practice partnership focused on parent brokering - Learn about a design-led research project to align youth-centered, interest-driven learning pathways with the needs and interests of a local community-based creative arts and technology organization. This case study provides one example of a design-led learning innovation to deepening interest-driven learning pathways for youth.
Activities for Programs
  • Student Design Activities: Bouncy Ball Factory - Youth engineer bouncy balls that meet particular criteria. Using the engineering design process, they develop and test their creations.
  • Student Design Activity: Paper Table - Youth engineer a table from a newspaper that is at least 8" high and strong enough to hold a book.
  • Student Design Activity: Take Flight - Using everyday materials, youth engineer a glider that can fly straight for 15 feet.
  • Student Design Activity: Keep Your Cool! Design Your Own Cooler Challenge - Youth design a cooler that will keep a bottle of water cool using the engineering design process. They test their prototype and graph their results to determine the effectiveness of the solution.
  • Student Design Activity: Design a Watercraft - Youth engineering a small boat out of straws and plastic wrap that can hold weight.
  • Student Design Activity: Get it Write! - Youth engineering a writing device (pen) using everyday materials. They think about both the (water soluble) "ink" and the delivery mechanism.
Mizzen by Mott Moonshot Connection
The Mizzen By Mott app delivers inspiring and engaging activities that spark learning in young people. Supported by the Mott Foundation, Mizzen is available at no cost to afterschool professionals! Encourage partners to download the Mizzen By Mott app to access STEM activities at your finger-touch! You’ll find it in Mizzen here.

Featured Activities & Playlists
  • Playlist: STEM Activities for K-5th Grade in Small Groups - This playlist is a great mix of engineering and science activities that are easy and fun for small groups of students.
  • Playlist: Science Notebooks for 3rd - 12th Grade - Keeping a notebook can help your students think and act like scientists and engineers. Sample these easy-to-implement strategies and lessons to bring science notebooking into your program.
  • Module: S.INQ Up Earth and Space for 6-8th Grade - Earth and Space is an inquiry and exploration-based curriculum that uses hands-on activities focused on the relationships between the earth, the solar system, and human impacts on our global environment.
This work of the Iowa Afterschool Alliance is made possible by funding from STEM Next and the Million Girls Moonshot Innovator Grant. The mission of MGM is to expand STEM opportunities, specifically in the field of Engineering, for girls across the United States, which is made possible through state partnerships.
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