Million Girls Moonshot | October Resources

This October, you are invited to engage with Indiana Afterschool Network and the Million Girls Moonshot in a Regional Networking project. We are looking for providers who are interested in beginning, strengthening, and/or deepening their STEM practices to come together in Regional Networks. 

We also seek 6 STEM providers to step forward as Regional Leaders, setting an example of high-quality STEM programming across Indiana and supporting other STEM programs in their efforts. These 6 leaders will receive a stipend worth $3,000, benefits valued at $300+, and up to $500 in regional project support. From October 2023 to August 2024, the Regional Leaders will deepen their own STEM practices through professional development with Million Girls Moonshot implementation partners and IAN. They will network with peers across the state, supporting regional STEM programs through modeling and mentoring best practices. As a result, these 6 Leaders will receive recognition at the state and national level for their efforts.

If you are interested in joining a regional network of collaboration, learning, and connection, please reach out to Andrea Gerig. Those who would like to find out more about becoming a Regional Leader are invited to download the application materials and return your answers to the application questions to Andrea Gerig via email by October 6, 2023.

In addition, IAN offers a new Million Girls Moonshot Community of Practice, starting in November. Join us as we enjoy presentations from Million Girls Moonshot Implementation Partners around the Transformative Practices. These sessions will help you build your knowledge while learning alongside program provider peers across the state. Please contact Andrea Gerig with any questions. Click the Registration link to see upcoming topics and get your name on the contact list.

-- Andrea Gerig | Associate Director of Quality Initiatives, STEM Specialist

The Indiana Afterschool Network is proud to be part of the Million Girls Moonshot initiative, working to inspire and prepare the next generation of innovators by engaging one million more girls in STEM learning opportunities through OST programs over the next five years.

The Million Girls Moonshot seeks to re-imagine who can engineer, who can build, who can make. See below for information and resources that can help advance this goal.

The Million Girls Moonshot is an initiative of the STEM Next Opportunity Fund.

Special Opportunities

STEM Flights

STEM Flights is a national nonprofit organization that combines STEM education with a free flight experience for middle and high school students. They pair students with Pilot Mentors in their geographic area to receive a flight experience, learn about aviation and STEM careers, and connect with local aviation enthusiasts. Students complete the STEM Flights application, study online aviation and STEM curriculum, and submit a letter of recommendation before they are matched with a pilot. Student applications are accepted year-round and in all 50 states.  

Their mission is to create positive experiences in aviation and inspire America’s youth to pursue STEM and aviation careers. If you know a 6th-12th grade student who is interested in the world of STEM or aviation, encourage them to apply today!


First Woman Camp Guide & Hands-On Activities Set

As NASA prepares to put the first woman on the Moon in the next few years through the Artemis Missions, join in an opportunity to imagine the possibilities of future lunar exploration with your upper elementary and middle school students. This set of hands-on activities accompanies NASA’s “First Woman” graphic novel series, which tells the story of Callie Rodriguez, the first woman to explore the Moon. While Callie is a fictional character, the first female astronaut and person of color will soon set foot on the Moon. Intended for uses in afterschool and summer settings, this First Woman Camp Experience Guide will bring the excitement of NASA’s science and technology.


Surprisingly STEM Video Series

Surprisingly STEM is a video series that highlights exciting and unexpected careers at NASA. This series is designed to inform students about the broad range of career opportunities at NASA – outside of the typical associations of rocket scientists and astronauts – and to break down perceived barriers for working at the agency. 

October 2023 | Thermal Blanket Technician

You’ll surely get wrapped up in this episode of Surprisingly STEM featuring Paula Cain, a thermal blanket technician at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. She covers why things sent into space need to be protected by a thermal blanket, and shares how two of her passions – fashion design and Star Trek – were interwoven into an exciting career at NASA! 


November 2023 | Wind Tunnel Engineers

We’re big fans of Sam Zauber and Frank Quinto – two wind tunnel test engineers at NASA’s Langley Research Center! You’ll be blown away as you learn how NASA uses its 14-foot by 22- foot subsonic wind tunnel. See some of the fascinating things Frank and Sam have tested there, and learn what propelled them into their exciting STEM careers.


December 2023 | Marine Biologists

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center is known for its launch pads, rocket launches and cutting-edge technology -- it’s also a national wildlife refuge! NASA has a team of biologists whose mission is to protect and preserve threatened and endangered species living near launch sites. Biologists Eric Reyier, PhD, and Bonnie Ahr share how their ecological work contributes to the agency’s larger mission and how they personally ended up on a boat in the Florida wetlands doing exciting work for NASA. 



Afterschool Math Plus Curriculum Training

Each webinar will include strategies to support a positive Math Identity (e.g., role models, career connections, family connections, literacy connections). Click below to register for one or more of the webinars and learn how to use Afterschool Math Plus activities in your out-of-school time program.

October 17 | MusicMath: Composing Music (with Math!)

Experiment with repeating patterns and create new arrangements using similar sounds in different sequences.


Asking Purposeful Questions

Oct. 4, Oct. 18, Nov. 1 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM ET

Questions begin a path toward discovery, imagination, and STEM exploration. How can we help youth expand and clarify their thinking and develop their reasoning through the questions we ask them? This module is a great way to train staff on how to facilitate STEM learning. Experienced educators also love being part of a cohort as a way to connect with other educators across the country, to learn new lesson plans, and to reflect on practice. This is an introductory module and a prerequisite to other opportunities. Register with cohort code: AC321PQ


Make Math Engaging

Nov. 13, Nov. 27, Dec. 11 | 2:00 PM ET

Are you looking for fun ways to help youth build number sense and problem-solving skills? Math can take on new meaning when it is integrated into daily routines in our afterschool programs. In this module, afterschool educators will explore and practice strategies for making math engaging and accessible.

Recordings are not available if you are unable to attend. Completion of the Asking Purposeful Questions module is a prerequisite for this module. Register with cohort code: AC343MP


Engineering Mindset Fall CoP

Oct. 12, Oct. 26 | 2:30 PM ET

The Click2Engineering community of practice (CoP) introduces out-of-school time educators to the basics of engineering and leading engineering activities with youth. The CoP is organized around the 10 Practices for an Engineering Mindset, and includes hands-on engineering activities, developing engineering experiences for youth, and learning skills to facilitate engineering practices. The CoP is 4 meetings over 6 weeks.


Harnessing the Magic of Math

Oct. 3, Oct. 10, Oct. 17 | 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM ET

Join this dynamic three-part virtual training series designed to breathe life into math through games, through meaningful, kid-friendly data analysis, and nature exploration. Our sessions focus on strategies that accommodate multiple grade levels and ability levels, helping you meet each student where they are. Prepare to turn your after-school program into a vibrant and engaging mathematical journey!


Click2ComputerScience Teen Leadership Course

On Demand

Click2ComputerScience’s new course, Teens Learning to Lead, is a great way to help new interns get prepared for working with youth. It is a leadership course for high school and college-aged people designed for participants to complete on their own, or with a team. It's recommended that teams who will be teaching together over the summer complete the course together. Participants will need a computer and a journal for reflecting on their learning. The reflection points can be the basis for discussions with a supervisor, mentor, or coach that will help participants learn and grow as leaders.

This is a self-directed online learning experience offered at no cost by Click2ComputerScience. The course is divided into four units with a culminating experience that lets participants apply what they have learned.



Looking for a sequence of activities you can implement in your afterschool program today? Say goodbye to googling or searching on Pinterest. Use the following activities in sequence to support youth in building an engineering mindset with NASA activities. 

  • Build a Pizza Box Solar Oven - Use easily found materials to create an oven where students can cook s’mores. The activity answers the question “What has engineering got to do with me?” in a way that is fun. 

  • Welcome to Space Math @ NASA - A collection of math videos, books, and activities that are sorted by grade level, science topic, NASA missions, and engineering topics. All activities are based on NASA Mission and projects.

  • STEM Activities for Families - Family engagement is a key factor in developing a positive STEM identity and success in STEM. These easy to implement, fun hands-on activities can be shared with families. The activities focus on engineering, technology, and math skills and content.

Recruit STEM Experts as Volunteers

Less than 50% of high school girls know a woman in a STEM career. Let’s change that - recruit STEM professionals to support the youth you serve today! 

VolunteerMatch attracts more than 1M site visits each month, and is easily one of the best ways to find strong role models for the youth you serve. 

The Moonshot has partnered with VolunteerMatch to connect STEM experts with OST programs! Create a free VolunteerMatch account and post volunteer opportunities to work with your youth today! Register here to find role models and mentors in STEM.



Transformative Practices

  • Equity and Inclusion Webinar: Girls STEAM Ahead with NASA Resources in Action Webinar - The Girls STEAM Ahead with NASA program, part of NASA’s Universe of Learning, provides resources and experiences that enable youth, families, and lifelong learners to explore fundamental questions in astrophysics, experience how science is done, and discover the universe for themselves. Join NGCP for this exciting webinar on 10/17/2023 to hear directly from this year’s 2023 Girls STEAM Ahead with NASA stipend recipients who are using these free resources and get ideas to implement in your own programs!

  • Equity and Inclusion Best Practices: Best Practices for Diversity and Inclusion in STEM - The US government sponsored document is a comprehensive analysis of diversity and inclusion in STEM in Federal agencies. The lessons learned and recommendations are applicable to many environments including education in and out of school. It provides a summary of best practices that can be employed in implementing strategies to promote diversity and inclusion in the STEM workforce. 

  • Engineering Mindset and Earth Week 2023: Earth Science Week 2023 - Earth Science Week, celebrated each October, reaches millions of people annually with activities, materials, and information about the geosciences. The theme of Earth Science Week 2023, is "Geoscience Innovating for Earth and People." The event (October 8-14, 2023), will emphasize the many ways that innovations in geosciences are helping communities create healthier and increasingly sustainable lives, while accelerating environmental problem-solving around the world. Find resources and learn more on the official website!

  • Role Models and Mentors: 10 Amazing Latina Women In STEM - To celebrate Hispanic Heritage month, Raising Smart Girls has listed 10 Amazing Latina Women In STEM.  

  • Family Engagement: Creating Pathways for Equity in STEM Through Family Engagement - This research paper describes the history, findings, and recommendations to reach underrepresented youth in STEM. The findings underscore the importance of family involvement and lists recommendations to change behaviors and the STEM pipeline. 

  • Partnerships: Empowering Montana's Future: Unleashing the Impact of NGCP State Collaborative - In each state, the National Girls Collaborative Project model creates a network of professionals, researchers, and practitioners, who facilitate collaboration and deliver high-quality, research-based professional development. Learn more in this blog post that highlights the Montana Girls STEM Collaborative!

IF/THEN® Resources

These 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 more.

These assets feature IF/THEN® Ambassadors , and can be used in marketing, presentations, social media, and conference presentations.

Mizzen by Mott

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: STEAM Activities for Middle School at Home
  • Playlist: STEM Activities for K-5th Grade
  • Balloon Rockets Challenge
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