ISTE20Creative Constructor
Lab Virtual
Leadership Summit
Edtech Advocacy &
Policy Summit

Building a Community of STEM Champions for Your Students

Participate and share

Participate and share : Interactive lecture

Sunday, June 23, 1:30–2:30 pm
Location: 113A

Katherine Clemens   Brandon Smith  
Community, school and family support are vital to helping students reach their full STEM potential. But how might we work collaboratively within our communities to create impactful, inclusive STEM education experiences? Come learn how to engage your community in supporting, designing and launching programming for exceptional student growth and achievement.

Audience: Coaches, Teachers, Principals/head teachers
Skill level: Beginner
Attendee devices: Devices not needed
Focus: Leadership
Topic: Community outreach
Grade level: PK-12
Subject area: Math, STEM/STEAM
ISTE Standards: For Educators:
  • Demonstrate cultural competency when communicating with students, parents and colleagues and interact with them as co-collaborators in student learning.

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

Participant outcomes from this session will include:
1. A better understanding of the skills and resources needed to build effective STEM programming that involves collaboration between school, families and communities.
2. Awareness of some of the challenges and pitfalls to avoid when attempting to create impactful, inclusive STEM education experiences.
3. Hands-on experience with sample activities that have been used to engage communities in thoughtful play and discussion with students.


20 min: Katherine and Brandon will briefly explain their backgrounds, their goals at work, and how those goals relate to building communities of STEM “champions” for students. They’ll describe real world events, activities and programming that they’ve lead in collaboration with educators and students. They’ll also discuss the challenges they’ve encountered when designing and launching programming for exceptional student growth and achievement.
20 min: Katherine and Brandon will lead participants through a hands-on STEM activity and design challenge component to demonstrate the types of programming that educators can implement back at their own schools and districts.
15 min. Katherine and Brandon will discuss strategies for gaining school/community/family buy-in and the importance of empowering those groups to be a part of their students’ STEM success. Participants will also develop 1-2 actionable steps to begin to initiate or further their own STEM programming efforts.
5 min. The session will conclude with a Q&A where participants can dig deeper into Katherine and Brandon’s strategies behind STEM programming.

Supporting research

What are STEM Ecosystems? -
Parents’ math anxiety can undermine children’s math achievement -
Intergenerational Effects of Parents’ Math Anxiety on Children’s Math Achievement and Anxiety -

More [+]


Katherine Clemens, Arizona State University

Katherine Clemens is a leader in education, innovation, and entrepreneurship with a track record of success in incubating and scaling new initiatives. In her current role as director at Arizona State University (ASU), Katherine initiates, develops, and leads strategic education initiatives in Entrepreneurship + Innovation in Knowledge Enterprise Development (KED). KED is responsible for advancing research, innovation, partnerships, entrepreneurship, and economic development for ASU. Katherine earned a bachelors degree in Political Science and Government from Purdue University, and a masters in Secondary Education and Teaching from Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at ASU.

Brandon Smith, MIND Research Institute

Brandon Smith is the Lead Mathematician and Product Director at MIND Research Institute, where he creates experiential learning programs for people of all ages, both in and out of the classroom. Over the past several years, he has focused on developing innovative projects to close what he calls the math “experience gap,” where children have insufficient exposure to math in their daily lives. Prior to joining MIND, Smith was a college instructor, where he won an outstanding teacher award. Smith has a bachelor’s in math and two master’s degrees in pure and applied mathematics.

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