Category Archives: Full STEAM Ahead

Full STEAM Ahead #13: Cubes in Space!

Have you ever wondered what would happen to an everyday item when it travels to space?  With the help of the Cubes in Space program, you no longer just have to wonder!  This unique opportunity provides students ages 11-18 a chance to send their experiment into the realms of space via the Sounding Rocket or Space Balloon.

Ok, so you’ve just found out that you get a cube and have the chance to take your experiment to new heights.  What would your experiment be?  What would you be testing?  What materials would you use?  What impact would this have on our lives here on Planet Earth?  Leave a comment with your idea!  Stumped?  Check out the student videos below that showcase ideas that got selected and launched into space!

For more information about the Cubes in Space program, check out their website at this link!

Full STEAM Ahead #12: Reflect On Your Hour Of Code


Hundreds of students across the 10 Westside elementary schools  (and millions around the world) took part in last week’s Hour Of Code challenge.  If you happened to be one of those students, why not take a few minutes to reflect on your experience as a coder?  Check out this timeline website for questions to get your brain into full reflection mode.   Challenge yourself to answer at least 3 parts of the timeline, but feel free to do more!  Email them to your EY Coordinator, or leave them as comments to this post.

If you didn’t have the opportunity to participate in the Hour Of Code, fear not!  Check out the website and begin your coding adventure today!   Don’t forget to come back and reflect on your experience once your hour is complete!


Hour Of Code Coming Soon!



Well, since the “T” in STEAM stands for technology, it seemed only right that a post goes up about the Hour Of Code event happening worldwide next week (Dec. 7th – 13th).  Head over to to get in on the coding fun and who knows, maybe even begin your career in the computer sciences!

While you are anxiously waiting for to begin, why not dig into information on coding and all things computer?  Perhaps you find yourself wondering how the internet works?  Or maybe you’ve always dreamed of sitting down with Mark Zuckerberg to learn a few programming tips and tricks.  Now you can!  Here is a link to videos that will get your brain wrapped around those intriguing topics and more!

Leave a comment about something new you learned or something that wowed you through your Hour Of Code experience or from watching the videos.

Happy Coding!

Full STEAM Ahead #10: Forest Fire in Nebraska


Image taken from:

Why would anyone want to start a forest fire on purpose?  How can you conduct a controlled burn?  What is a restoration biologist?  What components of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) are important to the controlled burn process?

Find the answers to these questions and more by doing a little research (start with the links below).  We would LOVE to take a few interested students to the forest to learn more about this process.  Your ticket?  Read on!

Research Links:

Watch a video and read about the controlled burn here:

Here is another news source:

Fontenelle Forest Website:

Article-Reducing catastrophic wildfires through managed burns:

When you are finished researching, display your learning somehow.  Push yourself to try a new app or a new way of showing your learning.  Here are some examples:

  • Write a letter Fontenelle Forest
  • If you could interview a restoration biologist, what questions would you ask?
  • Make a picture book or an A-Z book about the topic (an A-Z book has something related to the topic for every letter in the alphabet)

Email your finished product to the EY coordinator.

Full STEAM Ahead #9: Experimentation!


Are you someone who loves to figure out why things work the way they do?  Do you like to take on the challenge of solving mysteries?  Then these science videos might just be what you are looking for to make the most of your E/I time, or anytime!  Check out the link below that will lead you into a world of experimentation.  Choose a video and try to solve the mystery of what scientific event occurred?  Try creating  your own science video with a question at the end for others to solve.  Share this video with your EY Coordinator.

Sick Science Video Collection

Happy Experimenting!




# 8 Full Steam Ahead

Have you wanted to create your own video game?

Screen Shot 2015-10-23 at 3.02.02 PM

YES??? Well, “Floors” is the app for you

Watch this video that shows you what the app will do.

Watch this video that introduces how to start your own game and a little information about each of the buttons and what they do.

Use this Pixel Press guide to get started

Get started creating!

  1. Go to the app store and download Floors (Pixel Press) Screen Shot 2015-10-23 at 10.02.30 AM
  2.  Open app, type in your code and click “allow microphone”

Screen Shot 2015-10-23 at 10.02.26 AM

3. To get to the area where you will create click “Create”


4.  After spending time learning and creating, you can share your video game with your   teacher or the EY coordinator in your building. Create a post below telling us what you like about this app. Include your first name and your school with your post.

5. If you want to take this a step further and create a drawing and convert it to a video game, read this article and download this special graph paper at  to get started.

This is a tutorial for how to create your drawing on paper or game using the draw in app feature

This is a link to more video tutorials


#7 Full STEAM Ahead: Binary Code Name


Computer coding seems to be everywhere these days.  But what exactly is computer coding?  Well, it’s a little bit like teaching a dog tricks.  You have to teach a computer what to do by speaking its “language.”  One such language, or code, is binary.  It works by using a system of 2 symbols, base 2, often made up of 0’s and 1’s.  Check out this article on binary code and take on the challenges below.

Here are a few tasks for you to take on while reading the article:

*Write your name using UTF-8 binary code

*Write something in binary code using a symbol, object, or color that exists in two forms or states (ex:  coin, shapes, up/down arrows, etc…)

*Take the “Bit Groups” challenge at the end of the article

We would love to see the binary work you have done!  Leave a comment or email your EY coordinator.  Happy coding!

#6 Full STEAM Ahead: Cardboard Challenge


Image from

Mrs. Spady, the EY team should bring back the Cardboard Game seminar from a couple years ago.  That was really fun! ~Tallie, 6th grader

Some of you remember the Creative Problem Solving seminar 2 years ago where students created an arcade game out of cardboard boxes.  Caine’s Arcade is where the idea first started and you can check out Caine’s story by clicking here.

For this week’s Full STEAM Ahead challenge, create your own arcade game using materials from around your house.  There’s not need to go out and buy materials.  Be creative and re-purpose things you already have.  You can watch the videos linked below for some ideas.  When you are finished, take a picture of your game and send it to the EY coordinator at your building.  Better yet, bring the game to school and have your friends play it!  Happy creating!


Rubber Band Contest

Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 9.45.29 AM


Design and create a working invention/artwork that incorporates at least one (1) rubber band.

Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 9.46.11 AM


Go to to download the official rules guide and entry form. All entries must be postmarked by March 16, 2016. Contact the EY coordinator in your building if you need assistance with this project.