i-STEM at College of Western Idaho
i-STEM is a summer professional development opportunity for educators (PK-12) working in both classroom and informal settings. During the Institute, participants attend a strand on project-based, hands-on learning in a chosen content area, as well as general sessions tied to the Institute theme. Strand topics vary by location and can be accessed at the Institute links below in January 2023. Each participant will receive a kit of instructional materials unique to their strand, so that they can implement what they have learned in their own teaching environments.
i-STEM 2023 is Step up to STEM: Increasing Integration
Participants are encouraged to attend i-STEM with colleagues from their own school, district or organization so that you can learn together, share ideas and collaboratively implement what you have learned.
STEM AC is reaching out to businesses throughout the state to sponsor registration fees. We will reach out to you once you are accepted into the program and let you know if your registration fee is covered by a sponsor.
Your district may have funds to pay your registration fee to attend STEM AC PD opportunities. Learn more about Title 4 funding here and talk to your local administrator for guidance.
Fees for 2023: TBD
Eligible Applicants: All educators – formal and informal
2023 Funding Schedule
Open: February 10, 2023
Close: March 17, 2023
Award date: TBD
2023 i-STEM Dates for CWI:
June 13-16, 2023
PD Credits: PD credit is available for participation in this program.
College of Western Idaho
Nampa Campus Micron Education Center
5725 E Franklin Rd
Nampa, ID 83687
Map and Directions
* Indicates this strand is appropriate for informal educators.
Note: Kit contents and field trips are subject to change.
Strand Provider: Matt Wigglesworth and Jan Smith
Strand Description: Discover Earth’s Place in the Universe through the Central Idaho Dark Sky Reserve. Participants in this strand will explore a plethora of resources including NASA-sourced lesson materials that are aligned to Idaho Science Content Standards and NGSS along with data sets that allow for interpretation of light pollution, or the lack of it. Our dark skies will provide a phenomenal context for our K-8 students’ learning of astronomy content. Pedagogy is focused on a series of hands-on 5E inquiry activities that include field experiences in local and/or portable planetariums. Participants will receive a kit of materials that can be used in multiple ways in varying classroom settings along with access to web resources developed specifically for Idaho STEM teachers.
Your kits will/may include: The kits will provide physical and digital materials for participants to engage in the unit activities with their students. The kits emphasize models and instruction will provide participants with pedagogy on how to use models for NGSS practices in their grade level.
Strand Provider: Todd Anderson
Strand Description: Participants will be introduced to the Micro:bit physical computing platform. This strand will focus on what the Micro:bit is, how it is programmed, and how it can be used to foster both an engagement in STEM learning as well as the application of the design process. Those participating in this strand will program and build a variety of projects such as a Magic 8-ball, a digital thermometer that stores the minimum and maximum temperature values, and a digital pet. The Micro:bit could be used in any content area, and we will brainstorm some possible applications as we gain familiarity with, and competency using, this accessible computing platform. Students can become better computational thinkers as they break down big problems into the parts necessary to create an amazing project using the Micro:bit.
Your kit includes; Micro:bit V2 Go Bundles, containing a Micro:bit V2 board, a 6 inch micro USB cable, and a battery holder.
Strand Provider: Erica Holdridge
Strand Description: What do viruses have to do with Earth’s carbon cycle? A lot, it turns out. This strand will explore how every scale of biology, from the smallest molecules to the flow of energy across the planet, are all interconnected through the lens of viruses. Find out what exactly makes a virus a virus, the different ways in which they reproduce and spread, why they’re important for health, economic, and social services, and how these minuscule entities can have massive impacts on the way carbon moves through Earth’s ecosystems. You might even be surprised to find that some viruses can be beneficial. Participants in this strand will enjoy immersive virtual field trips to learn why waste water treatment facilities and the dairy industry are just as concerned with viruses as healthcare workers.
Your Kit will/may include: In addition to permanent access to virtual tours and HTML widgets, participants will leave with a variety of activities to bring back to their classrooms, including online apps that students can use to explore what controls virus population growth and spread as well as everything they need to let students culture human-safe viruses in their classroom, making these nearly-impossible-to-see microbes visible to the naked eye.
Strand Provider: Sonia Galvez
Strand Description: Participants will be introduced to fundamentals of drone technology and how to incorporate drones into educational settings. Concepts covered include drone safety, essential knowledge for flight operations, physics of flight dynamics, and real-world applications for drones. Experienced instructors will demonstrate successful methods for implementing drone curriculum with elementary/middle school-aged students. As part of their coursework, participants will discuss best practices for implementation and ways to extend and adapt the curriculum to include local drone competitions, ultimately creating action plans for their own drone education programs. Participants will take home 6 mini-drones and a complete set of materials for 30 students.
Your Kit will/may include: Ready, Set, Drone! kits comes with all of the supplies needed for 30 students to complete 12 one-hour activities, Instructor Guide, Curriculum Digital Download, Mesh Bag (for cleaning bricks), Small Storage Containers, and many more items to list!
Strand Provider: Susan Hawke
Strand Description: Learn how to use Learning Blade, an online curriculum for STEM Careers. Identify how to incorporate Learning Blade into your 6-12 classroom (Math, English, Science, Technology classes!). Connect Learning Blade curriculum and actually learn how to use your 3D printer in your classroom.
Your Kit will/may include: 3D printer, PLA filament and art supplies
Strand Provider: Amber McVey
Strand Description: Do you struggle to incorporate STEM into your daily lessons? Is coming up with low-cost, high-interest activities challenging? This strand will walk you through ways to reuse and re-purpose low-cost items to get the maximum output. You will build, create, and innovate as you explore STEM in activities and lessons focused on providing students with engaging, collaborative STEM opportunities.
Your Kit will/may include: The kit will contain robots, planks, makey-makey, rocket materials, 3D printers, VR/AR cardboard, paper circuits, and more.
Strand Provider: Rebekha Lulu
Strand Description: IDX is a four-day professional development workshop where educators will learn the basics of 3d design, 3d printing, and the engineering design process. After receiving the 4 days of training, the educator will return to their learning organization and support a youth team to complete a multi-week digital fabrication challenge where youth learn, and practice skills related to 3D design and 3D printing. The educator will support and guide students to properly document their process and encourage multiple design iterations throughout the challenge. Teams will then present their work at the FabSLAM Student Showcase Event where a panel of judges will critique their work. Judges will announce the winning design at the Showcase Event. The Showcase events will be hosted in the same general areas where the trainings were held. This iSTEM strand is for everyone – whether you’re an old 3D printing pro or have never seen a 3D printer in your life!
Your Kit will/may include: The kid will include a 3D printer, 3D Filament, tools for 3D printers, online activities and support.
Strand Provider: Kellie Dean and Jim Schmidt
Strand Description: The PCS Edventures BrickLAB is a beloved tool that has proven its relevance and effectiveness time and again. Studies show that continual hands-on interactions with building bricks often correlates to stronger spatial reasoning, language and problem-solving skills. Participants in this BrickLAB session will leave armed with fun activities that align with STEAM and capitalize on soft skills, while promoting active learning. BrickLAB Core connects English Language Arts (ELA), math, science and social studies topics to captivating engineering design challenges. The BrickLAB complements all academic areas and can be implemented in any phase of a lesson, and hit all learning modalities, so students engage with the content and mastery of instructional outcomes becomes evident.
Your Kit will/may include: Grade Level Instructor Guide with lesson plans and student pages and over 3,000 BrickLAB Bricks