As teachers, we like to prepare for the next school year when summer rolls around. Many of us have no clue what fall might bring. We know how valuable STEM challenges, enrichment, and hands on lessons are to our students, but we are a bit puzzled as to how we might make that happen come fall.

As educators, we are going to have to be flexible as we try to put those puzzle pieces together! My friends and I have a few ideas to get you thinking of some creative ways to have one to one STEM challenges as well as at the drop of a hat, virtual challenges!

Over at the Science School Yard, Renee has come up with some great ways to share STEM activities remotely or one to one in class. Check out the post on using Flipgrid so that all students have a voice! Getting all students engaged can often be that missing puzzle piece. Check out her post HERE to find a variety of examples of how to utilize Flipgrid to add science and STEM to your school day, whatever that might look like in fall!

Renee is also sharing her top three STEM activities that can be used for back to school STEM challenges whether you are virtual or in school with modifications. From Saving Sam remake for a one to one challenge…to Playground and School Rules that will surely get a remake come fall. This really can be the puzzle piece to help you organize your back to school challenges! Check out this post here for great STEM station supply tips as we head back to school, too!

Carol Davis over at Teachers Are Terrific has some terrific ideas as you start to piece together what fall might look like! Let’s talk about STEM at Home!  How can it work? That is a major puzzle to solve- but Carol has a blog post that will walk you through step-by-step. The post will put all the pieces together so your students will be using the engineering design process and completing a STEM Challenge on their own (with parental help). The post will make this easy for you and it is full of tips! Best of all,  you can grab a free STEM Challenge to try!  

Meredith Anderson from Momgineer, just like the rest of us loves to use inexpensive resources to build STEM challenges. One of her favorite items for a quick go to for fall is the good ole’ paper plate! Don’t be puzzled as to how to use them this fall…she has a great blog post perfect for you which provides you with five easy STEM challenges that use paper plates! From STEM roller coasters to STEM towers there is bound to be a back to school idea in Meredith’s post found here!

Simple Paper Plate STEM Basket Challenge

If you are looking for ideas for distance learning to find another piece of the puzzle for this fall, then head over to a great blog post from Sarah at Science and STEAM Team! Here you find  links to several activities that parents can do at home with parents or used by teachers. Here is the link to New Digital Resources For the Pandemic and Beyond! I love the digital field trips that your students can take or even what is a digital resource. Let’s just admit, I wasn’t sure what I was going to do come the end of March for my over 400 students, I can’t imagine what our parents were thinking…what is a digital resource? Great place to start with this post!

Is how to start back in the fall still puzzling you? To get started working toward finding the background and resources you need head on over to this great blog post on the importance of relationship building in and out of school. If you struggling to engage students during distance learning head over to Vivify to get a list of icebreakers and games to keep students engaged and motivated during remote learning as well as an amazing list of tools for you to utilize! Perfect for back to school, these activities also develop important 21st-century skills like communication, creativity, and collaboration. The list is divided into three parts: relationship-building icebreakers, fun games, and top tools for distance learning and can be found HERE.

Distance Learning Games.png

One last piece of the puzzle for the Whole Teacher as we navigate our way into the next school year! We invite you to join us for the Whole Teacher EclecticCon. This virtual conference of 50+ sessions includes 30 hours of training starting July 27th. Click here to learn more. Join us Carol from Teachers are Terrific, Renee from Science School Yard, Meredith from Momgineer, Sarah from Science and STEM Team, and Natasha from Vivify as we present along with over 50 presenters as we share more tips and tricks that are truly a puzzle to all of us!

How we piece this all together will be the key to our success and the success of our students as well!

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