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The Idaho State Constitution prevents the Idaho STEM Action Center from funding private and parochial organizations, as well as out-of-state applicants.

For questions regarding funding opportunities, please contact

Max funding per award: $3,500
Anticipated # of awards: Up to 7

Opp goals/objectives: Provide training and materials for early education practitioners and caregivers in rural communities to engage young children in inquiry-based STEM education through play. Priority will be given to organizations serving underserved families including rural and Spanish-speaking populations.

Brief description: This grant provides education organizations serving children ages 3-5 (includes kindergartens, preschools, libraries, Head Start, & childcare facilities) with both professional development and funding to support early STEM learning. The purpose of the grant is to educate parents and caregivers on the importance of providing discovery and inquiry-based activities for young children. After receiving one day of professional development and a starter kit of STEM tools, grant awardees will return to their educational organization and host a series of four family/caregiver workshops. Attendees will complete a pre-survey to obtain baseline data on current behaviors and attitudes towards STEM and discovery learning. Workshop attendees will be encouraged to attend all four workshops and complete a post-survey to determine if any changes in behavior and attitude occurred due to the workshop experience. These surveys will be provided by the STEM AC. Families/caregivers attending the workshop are eligible to receive gift cards or stipends for each workshop attended, with a bonus for attending all four sessions. Funding provided by the STEM AC can be used to support these stipends, food, facilitator time, STEM materials and tools, and more.

This grant has a particular focus on rural communities and reaching Spanish-speaking families. Additional points will be awarded to applications which address these specific underserved populations. In addition, applications which note that they have a Spanish-speaking staff or community member willing to commit to the project and assist with workshops will be awarded extra points on review.

Sites awarded the grant will be provided with the following:

  • One-day professional development workshop including travel stipend and ~$500 STEM toolkit with early education materials and tools (Idaho STARS credit will be available)
  • Online webinar supporting family engagement workshops
  • $3,500 to host a series of family engagement workshops (to be completed by June 30, 2019)
  • Skilled coach support for initial family engagement workshop
  • Pre- and Post-Surveys

Funding can be used for STEM materials and tools, workshop food, facilitator stipends, and incentives for family participation. See the application for all grant details and requirements.

Deadline to Apply: January 16, 2019
Award Grants: ~January 22-31, 2019

Program Partners: This program is made possible through a grant by the Joan Ganz Cooney Foundation FamLAB Spark Grants Program

Training Sites & Dates:
February 16, 2019: Twin Falls Public Library
February 23, 2019: Portneuf District Library
March 2, 2019: Boise Public Library
March 9, 2019: Coeur d'Alene Public Library

Travel - funding sent directly to School District, Library or educational organization from STEM AC
Regional workshops are being in order to keep travel to a minimum. You are required to attend the workshop closest to your organization. The STEM Action Center covers all costs of the professional development workshop including breakfast and lunch during the training. Travel stipends will be provided based on the following schedule and are intended to cover any and all costs of travel:
0-49 miles one-way: $0
50-149 miles one-way: $250
150+ miles one-way: $450
(Use to calculate one-way mileage)

Max funding per award: Up to $2,500 for in-state competitions, up to $5,000 for national competitions

Opp goals/objectives: The goal of this opportunity is to build student and educator investment in STEM initiatives by supporting Idaho student participation in STEM-related competitions on the state and national level.

Brief description: The Student Competition Travel Sponsorship is available for student STEM competition teams associated with a publicly-funded organization or nonprofit. Funding is allocated based on the guidelines provided below.

Schedule (open/close/review/award notification): Applications are reviewed monthly. Funding is awarded after STEM AC receives a signed sponsorship agreement, and processing may take up to 30 days. Please plan accordingly.

In this 7-hour early STEM Workshop, early childhood practitioners will explore ways to foster a sense of wonder in preschool students through the use of hands-on inquiry-based learning.

Participants will:

  1. Gain an understanding of inquiry-based learning and how it can meet young children's cognitive and social emotional needs
  2. See examples of inquiry-driven design thinking in the classroom
  3. Practice the concept of "hands-on, minds-on, hearts-on"
  4. Create their own early STEM curriculum that equips students to design, conduct, and analyze experiments to solve challenges from popular early childhood books
  5. Explore the use of high-level questioning to extend and scaffold students' learning during all learning and routine care activities throughout the preschool day
  6. Experiment with maker-centered learning tools specially designed for young children
  7. Learn to implement a screen-free preschool coding curriculum
  8. Receive a kit filled with STEM tools and materials worth $500 (estimate)
  9. Access digital resources on early STEM through the STEM Action Center website
  10. Network with local early childhood practitioners to support a strong early STEM learning program throughout Idaho

Eligibility: Formal and informal educators working with children ages 4 to 6 years of age. Up to 2 educators from one site may apply through one application.

Grantees will receive the following:

  • ~$500 STEM toolkit
  • Travel stipend to the closest training per workshop attendee
  • Idaho STARS credit will be available. Stay tuned for details.

Regional Training Workshops: Approximately 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
February 16, 2019: Twin Falls Public Library
February 23, 2019: Portneuf District Library
March 2, 2019: Boise Public Library
March 9, 2019: Coeur d'Alene Public Library

Travel - funding sent directly to School District, Library or educational organization from STEMAC
Regional workshops are being in order to keep travel to a minimum. You are required to attend the workshop closest to your organization. The STEM Action Center covers all costs of the professional development workshop including breakfast and lunch during the training. Travel stipends will be provided based on the following schedule and are intended to cover any and all costs of travel:
0-49 miles one-way: $0
50-149 miles one-way: $250
150+ miles one-way: $450
(Use to calculate one-way mileage)

View Early STEM Professional Development RUBRIC

Application Closes: January 4, 2019

Max funding per award: $2,000

Brief description: The Idaho STEM Action Center and program partners are proud to sponsor regional high school science and engineering fairs for the 2018-2019 school year. Winners of the regional fairs will be eligible to compete in the 2019 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. Intel ISEF is one of the premier student science and engineering competitions. Idaho will host its third annual regional science and engineering fairs in March 2019.

If selected, educators will receive up to $2,000 to support participation in their regional fair. Educators will use these funds to purchase classroom materials for student projects and to cover travel costs for the educator and students to attend their regional fair. The amount awarded will be based on the number of student projects approved to participate in the fair. Educators will receive $667 per approved student project, up to $2,000.

Learn more about Idaho's Science and Engineering Fairs at

Northern Idaho Science and Engineering Fair (North Idaho College, Coeur d'Alene): March 1, 2019
Eastern Idaho Science and Engineering Fair (Idaho State University, Pocatello): March 8, 2019
Western Idaho Science and Engineering Fair (Boise State University, Boise): March 15, 2019

Download the Budget Template here:

STEM AC may match up to 50% of your sponsor's donation, up to $5000, unless previously arranged with STEM AC. (The average request for this opportunity is a $5K STEM AC match of a $10K donation.) Your external donation amount must be a minimum of $1,000 per donor to qualify for this opportunity.

Funding decisions are made around the 15th of each month, with notifications going out by the end of the month. Note that it can take up to 45 days to process the request and get the funds to you. Please plan accordingly.

After eligibility is determined based on STEM AC guidelines for funding, first priority for the Public-Private Partnership opportunity goes to STEM industry/business/organization donors. Funding prioritization will then be based on the proposed project’s alignment to STEM AC’s strategic priorities (below) and the plan for measuring project outcomes.

The Idaho STEM Action Center’s enabling legislation focuses on five broad areas:

  • Student learning and achievement (including underrepresented populations)
  • Student access to STEM including equity issues
  • Teacher professional development and opportunities
  • College and career STEM pathways
  • Industry and workforce needs

Your sponsor(s) can receive:

  1. An Idaho education tax credit by donating to the STEM AC (information here). Please request your sponsor(s) make the donation check out to Idaho STEM Action Center and send to 802 W. Bannock St., Suite 701, Boise, ID 83702.
  2. A federal tax deduction by donating to our 501(c)(3) non-profit STEM AC Foundation. Please request your sponsor(s) make the donation check out to Idaho STEM Action Center Foundation and send to 802 W. Bannock St., Suite 701, Boise, ID 83702.

100% of the donation(s), regardless of whether it is made to the STEM AC or the STEM AC Foundation, will go to your STEM program.

In order to qualify for matching funds, you must have secured outside funding that can be run through the STEM Action Center or the STEM Action Center Foundation.

If you have any questions, please contact For donations over $10K, please contact the STEM AC at prior to submitting your application.

This STEM AC funding is available to sponsor conferences with a STEM focus. Please note that programs available through other STEM AC opportunities do not qualify for sponsorship- please wait for the relevant opportunity to open (including Computer Science Device Grant, PK12 Innovative STEM Project Grant, Camp & Out-of-School Program Support Grant, Family STEM/Career Awareness Grant, Student Competition Travel Grant, and others).

If you are not sure if your program qualifies for sponsorship, please contact before applying.

Eligibility: Publicly-funded educational organizations such as schools, libraries, after-school educational programs, educational nonprofits/community centers conducting STEM education-related programs

Funding decisions will be made around the 15th of each month, with notifications going out by the end of the month. Note that it can take up to 45 days to process the request and get the funds to you. Please plan your timeline accordingly.

Funding prioritization will be based on the proposed project’s alignment to STEM AC’s strategic priorities (below) and the plan for measuring project outcomes.

The Idaho STEM Action Center’s enabling legislation focuses on five broad areas:

  • Student learning and achievement (including underrepresented populations)
  • Student access to STEM including equity issues
  • Teacher professional development and opportunities
  • College and career STEM pathways
  • Industry and workforce needs

The Family STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math)/Career Awareness Grant is designed to support publicly-funded and nonprofit organizations. Up to $1,000 is available to selected applicants wishing to host an event focused on raising awareness about STEM education and career options. The event needs to target not only students, but also their parents/guardians, industry, and the community at large. The event could focus specifically on math or science or be in celebration of STEM in general.

Maximum award: $1,000

Eligibility: Publicly-funded educational organizations such as schools, libraries, afterschool educational programs, educational nonprofits/community centers.

Application Opening January 2019

Camp & Out-of-School Grants are available for current Idaho educational programs (schools, libraries, afterschool/nonprofits educational programs, workforce development training centers, etc.). This opportunity aims to improve learner understanding and experiences in the subjects of computer science, coding and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) in Idaho. Funding is available for STEM-related camps taking place between February and August 2019. Priority is given to camps serving underrepresented populations in STEM.

Maximum award: $10,000

Eligibility: Publicly-funded educational organizations such as schools, libraries, afterschool educational programs, educational nonprofits/community centers.

Application Opening February 2019

Max funding per award: If instructor(s) is a public formal or informal Idaho educator - lead instructor will receive a $1500 stipend, assistant instructor will receive a $500 stipend, and $200 for each participant kit. NOTE: Strand providers DO NOT have to be Idaho educators. If you represent a vendor, industry or other organization, please contact to learn more.

Anticipated # of awards: 36 strands

Opp goals/objectives: The goal of the i-STEM Summer Institute is to increase effective educator-student interactions by empowering Idaho educators to gain STEM content knowledge, pedagogical skills, and build local communities of learning to build student excitement for and interest in STEM and 21st-Century learning and skills.

Brief description: The i-STEM 2019 Strand Provider Application is open to all educators, formal and informal, who can provide a 4-day workshop on a STEM-related topic. Workshops should feature hands-on and project-based learning ideas for STEM-related content. The i-STEM summer institutes are hosted at six regional colleges and universities across Idaho during the last two weeks of June. This year's i-STEM theme is centered around project-based learning and alignment to Idaho science standards. For more information, visit

Opened: October 5, 2018 (CLOSED)
Closed: December 1, 2018 at 5pm MST (CLOSED)
Review: December 3, 2018 to January 1, 2018
Award Notification: January 15, 2019
Strand Provider Training: March, 2019 (Date TBA)
Organizational Conference Calls (2): April and May, 2019 (Date TBA)
Institutes: June 17-28, 2019
Final Report Due: July 12, 2019

Tips & Tricks: Visit for helpful information about being a strand instructor and to see examples of successful applications from past years.

Program Partners: i-STEM summer institutes take place at North Idaho College, Lewis Clark State College, Idaho State University, College of Eastern Idaho, College of Southern Idaho and College of Western Idaho.

Mandatory Strand Provider Training at Boise State University - Friday, February 22, 2019
Mandatory Organizational Conference Calls (2) - April and May  (Dates TBA)
North Idaho College Institute - June 17-20
Lewis Clark State College Institute - June 17-20
Idaho State University Institute - June 18-21
College of Eastern Idaho Institute - June 24-27
College of Southern Idaho Institute - June 24-27
College of Western Idaho (Treasure Valley i-STEM) - June 25-28


  1. Provide ~20 hours of instruction time across 4 days. Strand instruction should be hands-on, project-based and tie to real world applications.
  2. Create a budget for, purchase and assemble kits for participants. Kits help participants implement what you have taught them in their own teaching environments. STEM AC will provide $200 for each kit. If kits cost more than $200 each, the strand provider is responsible for finding outside funding to support these additional costs, otherwise additional costs will be taken out of the lead instructor's stipend.
  3. You are encouraged to plan a field trip to a local business or industry partner to demonstrate the real world applicability of your strand content.
  4. Attend mandatory training day Friday, February 22, 2019 and participate in follow-up training conference calls (Dates/Times TBA).
  5. Review participant applications.
  6. Provide a final report and receipts of kit purchases.

View the Scoring Rubric here:
Download the Budget Template here:
Download the Strand Instruction Agenda Template here:

Contact: Please direct all questions to

Opp goals/objectives: The goal of the Computer Science Professional Development Initiative Grant is to partner with providers of professional development programs that focus on CS. This grant will allow us to help K-12 educators implement the CS training into their classrooms.

Meeting the STEMworks “accomplished” criteria will ensure that applicant programs embrace and include the key elements of professional development in their programs, and is the basic requirement for consideration for Idaho STEM Action Center Computer Science (CS) Professional Development (PD) Initiative. Further, successful CS PD Initiative applications must answer Idaho specific questions and demonstrate how they meet Idaho specific objectives. To meet these, programs must:

  • Provide educators with strategies to better connect computer science with other disciplines, create and teach interdisciplinary programs, and evaluate interdisciplinary work.
  • Have the human and resource capacity to be replicable and sustainable anywhere in Idaho regardless of community size or location.
  • Be based on current best-practices, research and data and 1) immerse participants in inquiry and model inquiry forms of teaching; 2) be intensive and sustainable; 3) engage teachers in concrete tasks and be based on teacher experiences with students; 4) deepen teacher content skills; and 5) be grounded in a common set of professional development standards.
  • Communicate strategies, methodologies, and content that can be used by educators to effectively engage all learners in a computer science-focused approach to instruction. These include racial and ethnic minorities (including English language learners), students of low socioeconomic status, females, and/or students living in rural communities.
  • Provide educators strategies to better embed the practices associated with 21st century skills into their teaching.

Max funding per award: $500

Anticipated # of awards: 20

Opp goals/objectives: To increase the number of students, educators, and parents trying to code by hosting events during CS Education Week December 3 - December 9, 2018.

Brief description: This grant is to fund CS Hour of Code events across the state during CS Education Week December 3 - December 9, 2018. The purpose of the event is to get students, educators, parents and the community to try at least one hour of coding and to highlighting Computer Science by showcasing different CS activities such as Hour of Code, unplug activities, Little Bits, Codeybot, Micro:Bit, etc. Events should be for students but may also include parents, educators, administrators, and the community to encourage everyone to code. Funding can be used to purchase food and event materials. Funding cannot be used for resource materials such as devices.

Tips & Tricks: Think of community or industry partners you can invite, include in the planning and implementation of the event or to volunteer!

Schedule: (open/close/review/award notification): Open 10/5/18, close 10/26/18, review 11/1/18, notification:11/5/18

Max funding per award: $5,000

Anticipated # of awards: 5

Opp goals/objectives: The goal of this opportunity is to cover registration fees for FIRST Robotics Competition teams associated with a publicly-funded organization or nonprofit from a rural area in Idaho to attend the Idaho FIRST Regional Robotics Competition.

Brief description: Idaho will host its fourth FIRST Regional Robotics Competition in 2019. The acronym FIRST represents “For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology”. FIRST is a national organization founded in 1989 to inspire high school students to pursue careers in STEM. Understanding students “can’t be what they can’t see”, the program relies on working collaborations of high school students with STEM professionals and academic mentors in communities across the state. The result is a business-like environment in which, under a time constraint of only 6 weeks, student teams design, build, test and field a robot which performs specific tasks. Students hone, STEM kills while also developing skills in creativity, teamwork, critical thinking and problem-solving, project management, marketing, presentations and public speaking. To learn more about the FIRST Robotics program visit

This opportunity is intended for teams serving rural Idaho populations. "Rural" is defined using NCES definitions.

Funding must be used for registration fees associated with the FIRST Robotics Regional Competition. Any remaining funds must be used on expenses related to the team's participation in this competition.

Schedule: Opens Sept 17, 2018 | Closes November 4, 2018 | Notification November 5-6, 2018

Program Partners: Funding for team registrations is made possible by the Laura Moore Cunningham Foundation

Other dates/locations (reports, showcases, trainings, etc): Idaho FIRST Regional Competition March 27-30, 2019

Max funding per award: $10,000

Anticipated # of awards: 20

Opp goals/objectives: The goal of the Computer Science Grant is to equip educators with the materials necessary to more effectively instruct computer science concepts to Idaho students, reducing traditional barriers to entry in CS fields for underrepresented populations and increasing the CS knowledge base in Idaho.

Brief description: Equal access is a game-changer. In computer science fields, it enables students to build upon their skills over years, regardless of traditional barriers like geography and income. By helping reduce these barriers, the Computer Science Grant aims to assist students and educators in building program-specific knowledge and skills that can equate to long-term success.

This opportunity is open to Idaho public school formal educators, educational out-of-school nonprofit organizations, library staff, and other informal educators. Funding is available to purchase hardware (laptops, tablets, etc), CS software with the primary purpose of coding and related instruction, as well as related supporting materials (charging stations, keyboards and mice, monitors, etc). The primary and main use of all grant materials must be computer science instruction and learning. Funding for robotics, virtual reality, and drone devices is permitted only with strong justification that their primary use is coding and computer science instruction.

Schedule: Opens: 8/29. Closes: 9/30. Award announcement date (subject to change): 10/15.

View the Scoring Rubric here:

Max funding per award: $2,500

Anticipated # of awards: 60

Opp goals/objectives: The goal of this opportunity is to encourage the exploration of innovative concepts through engagement with new educational tools by educators, students, and local communities. This opportunity also aims to encourage students to explore future pathways in STEM-related fields, reinvigorate excitement for STEM educators, and build local communities of learning across Idaho.

Brief description: This PK12 Innovative STEM Project Grant is available for Idaho educators, library staff, and out-of-school organization staff to apply for funding to improve student understanding and learning experiences in the subjects of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Awards will be granted for innovative and creative projects in STEM subjects which are hands-on and/or project-based in nature. These projects should focus on student-level instruction that is unique to the needs of the students.

Schedule: (open/close/review/award notification): Opens 8/20. Closes 9/23. Award announcement date (subject to change): 10/8

Bright Spots:

View the Scoring Rubric here:

Max funding per award: Based on distance (see below)

Brief description: The Idaho STEM Action Center has funding available to support travel to the Connections! STEM Conference, hosted by the Idaho Council of Teachers of Mathematics and the Idaho Science Teachers Association. To learn more about this conference, visit This conference features STEM-related strands for all grade levels.

Registration for the conference is a prerequisite to receive travel funding. The registration to attend can be found here:

Schedule: Opens September 6, 2018. Funding will be awarded after attendance at the conference is confirmed.

Other dates/locations:
The Conference will be held on October 5-6 at Eagle High School in Eagle, Idaho.
Eagle High School
574 North Park Lane
Eagle, ID 83616

Travel funding is awarded as a reimbursement after attendance and provided based on the distance from your school or organization to the conference address. Please use your school or organization address, not your home address.
25-49 miles: $50
50-149 miles: $400
150+ miles: $600

Brief description: This application serves as the registration for your attendance at the 2018 Early STEM Education Summit. Requests for travel reimbursement will be processed after your attendance at the Summit. First consideration for travel funds will be given to those traveling the farthest.

Summit Goals and Outcomes: Idaho’s early education community is honored to receive a Spark Grant from the Joan Ganz Cooney Foundation and join the larger national community supporting early childhood education across settings. Young children in Idaho are an underserved population; our youngest citizens face limited preschool opportunities and a lack of high-quality educational resources in a state that is comprised of 70% rural regions and significant underrepresented populations. Especially critical for our young children are meaningful provisions of early STEM materials and enrichment to equip them for a digital tomorrow. Our project focuses on developing a network of early STEM advocates in the state, to articulate the current deficiencies in early STEM education, identify best practices, and implement pilot programs to reach the many underserved populations in Idaho. Led by the Idaho STEM Action Center (STEM AC), this network will be a convergence of government agencies, libraries, research institutions, and community-based organizations that provide learning across boundaries. A common goal of these organizations is to provide early education professionals the tools and language needed to be facilitators of inquiry-based STEM education. This network will convene at a one-day summit in October to bring together librarians, preschool educators, out-of-school educators, museum directors, public television educators, researchers and government agency staff. During the summit, participants will define a common meaning of early STEM, select common language surrounding early STEM education, share research focused on STEM in the early years, create relationships between partners to identified priority needs, and deploy a coordinated, intentional implementation of early STEM education throughout Idaho.

From the network and summit, pilot programs will be identified to reach and engage underserved and underrepresented populations. These pilot programs will serve children ages 0 to 8, supported by research from Boise State University (BSU) as well as resources from Idaho Public TV (such as new PBS activities), library programs, Idaho Out-of-School Network programs, and STEM AC support. Because BSU researchers work with practitioners and parents, pilot programs will focus on cross-setting learning. A key goal of pilot programs will be implementation in all major regions of the state. In the summer of 2019, the early STEM network will reconvene to evaluate the pilot programs, reflect on lessons learned and set new goals and an action plan moving forward. By combining our resources, strengths, and knowledge, our network can set the next steps for Idaho early STEM education, elevate the discussion and fully support regional needs to better reach underserved communities.

When: October 26th from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
Where: Riverside Hotel, 2900 W Chinden Blvd, Boise, ID 83714

(Call hotel at 208-343-1871 and ask for the Early STEM Summit group rate of $93/night. Room discount only available if booked before October 9th.)

Stipend amounts are available based on distance traveling one-way to the event (use

  • 0-49 miles: $0 travel reimbursement
  • 50-149 miles: $250 travel reimbursement
  • 150+ miles: $450 travel reimbursement

This reimbursement is meant to cover the cost of attendance at the Summit, including travel to and from and overnight lodging, as required.

Anticipated # of awards: 45

Opp goals/objectives: The goal of FabSLAM is to equip students with the practical, technical, and creative skills needed to engage with real-world problems of today and tomorrow.

Brief description: FabSLAM is a team-based digital fabrication challenge where youth learn and practice design, iteration, and production skills primarily focused on 3D design and fabrication. Educators will receive three days of professional development training for this program, and will coach students through a multi-week digital fabrication challenge, including proper documentation of their process and encouraging multiple design iterations throughout the challenge. Teams will then present their work at the FabSLAM Student Showcase Event, where a panel of industry professionals will judge their work based on creativity, iteration, design, and other criteria.


  • Grant open: August 2 - September 17, 2018 (NOW CLOSED)
  • Award notification: September 18-20, 2018
  • Training workshops:
    • Pocatello: October 11-13, Idaho State University Eames Complex (1999 Alvin Ricken Dr. Pocatello, ID 83201)
    • Boise: October 18-20, University of Idaho Water Center (322 E Front St. Boise, ID 83702)
    • Coeur d'Alene: October 25-27, North Idaho College (100 W Garden Ave. Coeur d'Alene 83814)
  • Student showcase events: Spring 2019

Funding details: Recipients of this grant will receive materials related to the program (FlashForge 3D printer, 3D design tools, filament, etc). Funding is also available to support travel to the trainings and showcases and substitutes, as needed.

Travel funding is appropriated as follows, based on one-way distance from your organization to your closest training site:

  • 25-49 miles: $100
  • 50-149 miles: $550
  • 150+ miles: $750

Eligibility: Publicly-funded and nonprofit organizations serving grades 5-9 are eligible to apply. Participating in a regional showcase event is a requirement for this program. Organizations that have participated in FabSLAM in previous years are not eligible for this opportunity.

Learning Blade is an online, supplemental STEM career awareness system aligned to Idaho's content standards. Learning Blade uses game-based "missions" that focus on societal problems and needs instead of building the program around a particular technology or scientific principle. The missions involve a wide variety of STEM domains and careers, allowing exposure to more contexts than are traditionally available in many school settings. Missions also demonstrate how core academic skills are used in STEM careers, producing analytic reports on the specific skill objectives for individual students or classes. The system is fully internet-based, running on desktops and tablets including iPads. Learning Blade does not require extensive teacher training or classroom materials and is complementary to project- or lab-based activities. The unique organization allows activities to be utilized both in an entertaining self-paced game environment and as skill practice within academic classrooms.

This grant is open to Idaho public schools for grades 6-8. Up to 40 schools will be selected in Idaho to receive full school licenses for one year to implement Learning Blade programming. Priority will be given to schools offering the broadest impact by proposing implementation throughout multiple grades (within 6-8 range) and multiple subject areas. More information on the program can be found at or at Idaho Learning Blade Flyer.

Learning Blade helps to:

  • Build awareness of and interest in STEM careers
  • Demonstrate the relevance of academics to careers
  • Help prepare students with the required academic skills

Each fall, thinkers and makers from around the world join the Imagination Foundation for a day of creative construction. Inspired by the short film, “Caine’s Arcade,” the Global Cardboard Challenge is a worldwide celebration of child creativity and the role communities can play in fostering it.

Join us on October 6, 2018, for an opportunity for kids to build whatever they can dream up out of cardboard, recycled materials and imagination!

The STEM Action Center is granting eligible learning organizations hosting Cardboard Challenge events across Idaho with $325 to support their event.

Visit for more information. Watch the video for “Cain’s Arcade” on YouTube. Check out some great resources including a Cardboard Challenge playbook and activities by clicking here

The Week of Making is an opportunity to for individuals in communities throughout the U.S. to participate in Making activities locally, celebrating the innovation, ingenuity, and creativity of Makers. The Idaho STEM AC is encouraging Idaho learning organizations to get hands-on, get creative, get inspired, and get MAKING this summer!! This grant is to support the purchase of tools, technology, materials, and supplies needed to host fun and engaging maker-centered activities for "kids" of all ages! (Yes, this can include adults!)

All not-for-profit and/or publicly-funded educational organizations (IDAHO ONLY).

Must apply to be an Affiliate Maker Camp through Maker Media's site and add your event to the map to get Idaho recognized! In addition to completing this application you must agree to:

  • Host maker-centered activities at your learning organization over the summer - inclusive of the Week of Making June 11-17, 2018.
  • Utilize funding to purchase tools, technology, materials, and supplies to host maker-centered summer activities.
  • Complete a final report through the Community Grant Portal by deadline stated. This report will include data on participation, details on activities hosted, and feedback from events through participant surveys.

FUNDING: Those organizations meeting the requirements will be awarded $500.00 to purchase materials and supplies to support the activities.

Deadline to apply: 5:00 pm May 15, 2018.

The next generation of Idaho jobs will require a flexible set of skills that include creativity, communication, collaboration and problem-solving. We can cultivate these skills -- and increase economic opportunity for our children -- through an educational approach that centers on discovery, experimentation and design (Making). These are learning processes that can happen not only in advanced science and math classes, but across curricula and for all age groups, setting up youth for success in an interdisciplinary, 21st century workforce.

This workshop is for rural communities (population ~6,000 and under) whose educators have already discovered the joy of Making and who are looking for meaningful ways to integrate a Making approach into their programs and classrooms. This is an opportunity for your organization to bring educators together and set a course for 21st century learning at the community level. Our Idaho-based facilitation team will inspire you with innovative new tools, cutting-edge approaches to learning, and strategies for developing sustainable programs that foster STEM learning and 21st century skills.
A lead organization will apply for this grant, but must collaborate with other community organizations such as schools, libraries, out-of-school learning organizations, and other educational institutions and obtain their commitment to participate in the entire project.

Due to the unique and comprehensive nature of this project, you are encouraged to contact Jeff or Francesca - the lead facilitators - about the requirements and the overall project. Francesca Bessey: and/or Jeff will be happy to answer your questions, determine if this is a good fit for your community, and guide you through the application process.

This grant supports a multi-month project, starting with the implementation of a two-day STEM professional development workshop for K-12 educators, including teachers, librarians, daycare providers and out-of-school program staff. Organizations selected for this opportunity will receive the following as part of their award:

  • $10,000 for the following:
    • $1,500 to support the two-day workshop including costs for food, supplies, copies, marketing etc…
    • $3,000 to purchase new STEM equipment for the lead organization
    • $5,000 to distribute to partner organizations ($1,000/each up to five) that participates in the workshop and who completes a making-based STEM activity at their site (if additional organizations participate, additional $1,000/organization will be provided by STEM AC to Lead Organization)
  • Curriculum and materials for all workshop modules
  • Professional facilitation of all workshop modules
  • Tailored promotional materials including fliers and social media
  • Pre- and post-workshop documentation including registration and assessment forms
  • Workshop planning and recruitment support
  • Facilitation of three (3) digital meetups for participants following the workshop to provide opportunities for extended learning and community building


  • Recruit partner community organizations for participation in project
  • Make all arrangements for 2-day workshop in including location, food, and supplies (with assistance from facilitation team)
  • Attend two-day workshop
  • Complete all pre- and post-workshop surveys and evaluations from STEM AC
  • Attend all digital meetups as scheduled
  • Complete making-based STEM activity at your organization
  • Oversee partner organizations and distribute funds to those who meet requirements
  • Complete final report


TIMELINE: Lead organization will work with the STEM AC facilitation team to schedule the 2-day workshop and establish an overall time frame for the project based on the community’s needs.
Application closes April 30, 2018 and grants awarded by May 15, 2018.

The Idaho STEM Action Center is excited to announce the Industry's Excellent Educators Dedicated to STEM (INDEEDS) Awards!

Educators were selected from both K-6th and 7th-12th grade categories. These Idaho educators with a strong commitment to going above and beyond in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) were chosen by industry leaders.


  • $2,000 individual cash prize from Industry awards
  • Up to $2,000 from the Idaho STEM Action Center to attend a national conference related to STEM to advance their professional practices
  • The educator's school will receive $2,000 for STEM initiatives

Winners will be honored at the Idaho Technology Council's Hall of Fame Gala October 17, 2018.

View the Scoring Rubric (