Monday, November 26, 2018

November is National Native American Heritage Month

In 1990, President George H. W. Bush declared the month of November as National Native American Heritage Month. This commemorative month aims to provide a platform for Native people in the United States of America to share their culture, traditions, music, crafts, dance, and ways and concepts of life. This gives Native people the opportunity to express to their community, both city, county and state officials their concerns and solutions for building bridges of understanding and friendship in their local area.


Native Americans have made many great contributions to society throughout history. Read about the recent contributions that two amazing Native American women have made to their local communities and how they were elected to the United States House of Representatives. A first for the States of Kansas and New Mexico.

Read about Deb Haaland and her work in this New York Times article.



Deb Haaland - Democrat - member of Laguna Pueblo -New Mexico.




Sharice Davids - Democrat - Member of the Ho-Chunk Nation - Kansas.

Read about Sharice Davids and her work in this New York Times article.


Here are some resources that you can use to engage youth in Native American Learning Activities:

1) Native American Lessons, Activities, and Resources (NEA Website) 

2) Native American Student Activities, Lesson Plans, and Collection
    Guides (Library of Congress) 

3) Native American Heritage Month Resources (Indian Country Today)

4) Celebrate Native American Heritage Month (Education World) 



Now let's take a peek and see how a few expanded learning programs in the region have been engaging youth in STEM / enrichment learning activities.

Name of Expanded Learning Program Provider:
Sacramento Chinese Community Service Center

Name of District: Twin Rivers Unified School District

School Site: Frontier Elementary

Grade Level of Activity: 4th through 6th

Number of students who took part in the activity: 20-25 students

Type of Activity: STEAM Activity - Students worked in teams and built a bridge using marshmallows and toothpicks and tested if their bridge was strong enough to hold a book(s) the longest.

Learning Outcomes -Students were able to:
  • Develop a blueprint for their bridge on paper
  • Critically and strategically think how to build the bridge by calculating their steps and    utilizing the provided materials (toothpicks and marshmallows) effectively
  • Communicate and collaborate with a peer on the project
  • Explore STEAM through a hands-on project

ASES students engineering bridges.




For more information on this activity please contact Lily Kobzar
Program Manager at lily@sccsc.org.


Name of Expanded Learning Program Provider:



Grade Level of Activity: Suitable for All Grade Levels

Number of Students who took part in the activity: 11

Type of Activity: Marble Run - Engineering and Science

Learning Outcomes -Students were able to:

  • Engineering a unique marvel track to have their marvel travel through
  • Explore the concept of gravity and the role that it plays in the marble run
  • Explore what variables contribute to friction
  • Sharpen their teamwork skills
  • Use their creativity to solve this STEM challenge



ASES students working together to engineer a marble run.


For more information on this activity please contact Ashley Johnson
Program Manager at Ashley.johnson@sccsc.org.




STEAM / Expanded Learning and Other Pertinent Articles:

1) Why is it crucial to make cultural diversity visible in STEM education
    (STEM Teaching Tools, November 2018)

2) English Learners in STEM Subjects 
    (National Academies of Science Engineering Medicine Press 2018)

3) Digital Technology Is Gambling With Children's Minds
    (Education Week article by Elias Aboujaoude, November 13, 2018)

4) To Curb Youth Smoking, Vaping FDA Announces Plan 
    Aimed at Flavored Products
    (Education Week article by Evie Blad, November 15, 2018)

5) What Educators Need to Know About Teaching Thanksgiving
    (NPR article by Mayowa Aina, November 22, 2018)

6) Getting Your To-Do List Under Control
    (Edutopia article by Marissa King, October 11, 2018)

7) A 4-Step Process for Building Student Resilience 
    (Edutopia article by Michele Lew, November 7, 2018)

8) Getting Creative with SEL
    (Edutopia article by Maurice J. Elias, Sara LaHayne, November 5, 2018)

9) Using Stories to Teach Math
    (Edutopia article by L.L. Barkat December 22, 2017)

10) Using Science to Bring Literature to Life 
      (Edutopia article by Amy Schwartzbach- Kang / 
       Edward Kang, February 22, 2018)


STEAM (other core content) Activities / Websites / Podcast:

1) Do It Yourself STEM Activities
    (Square Root Academy website)

2) 4 STEM Activities for Winter
    (Think Fun website)

3) 14 Winter Themed STEM Activities 
    (Highlights website)

4) 12 Cool Winter Experiments
    (Hello Wonderful website)

5) Arts Integration Resource Roundup
    (Edutopia website)

6) Winter Physical Education Activities
     (P.E. Central website)

7) Starting Your Podcast
    (NPR Resources for Educators working with students)

8) Teaching Podcasting: A Curriculum Guide for Educators
    (NPR website)

9) The World of Expanded Learning 
    (Bruno Marchesi - YouTube Vlog)

10) We Dream Podcast
      (Youth-led podcast presented by SCUSD Men's and
      Women's Leadership Academy)


STEAM / Educational Grants:


1) Afterschool Alliance Grant Page

2)  Bank of the West Grant Page

3) CAN Funding Opportunities Webpage

4) The Impact Foundry Grant Page


STEAM / Non-STEAM Professional Learning Sessions / Contest / Events:

1) NPR Student Podcast Challenge
    (January 1 - March 31, 2019)

2) SMUD Free Educational Workshops (Free)

3) Physical Computing: Series (SCOE: Free)
    (December 2018 - January 2019)

4) Nadine Burke Harris in Conversation
    (Date: December 3, 2018) (Cost: $29.00)

5) Conflict Resolution:(Date: December 12, 2018) (Cost: Free) 
    (Grades: K-12)

6) Engineer It!(Date: December 12, 2018) (Cost: Free) 
    (Grades: K-12)

    (Date: January 10, 2019) (Cost: $29.00)

8) Put Me In Coach(A two session series)
    (Dates: January 23, 2019 and March 6, 2019)

    (Dates: February 8 and 9, 2019) (Cost: $100)
    (Location: Long Beach, CA)

      (Date: February 13, 2019) (Cost: $29.00)


Thanks again for all that you do in the field. Please keep us posted about STEM 
events / activities in your area. Please feel free to contact us at any time.

Monica Gonzalez-Williams (SCOE: Region 3: After School Regional Lead):
mgonzalez@scoe.net

Phil Romig (SCOE: Science Curriculum Specialist): promig@scoe.net

Mark Drewes (SCOE: Project Specialist II: Expanded Learning) mdrewes@scoe.net

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