Each county 4-H program is unique, and a set of packaged programs does not necessarily meet a community’s needs. Based on the needs and interest locally, as well as your resources and support, there are a variety of programs and curricula available to support Science and STEM initiatives in Georgia.  Keep in mind that STEM is not just teaching science, technology, engineering, and math. It is the interdisciplinary approach to using science and engineering practices in project-based, problem-solving, inquiry-driven activities.

When evaluating resources that you may find, consider if the material is reflective of current research findings.  Principles to consider include:

  • hands-on activities organized around solving real-world problems relevant to youth
  • follows the experiential learning model
  • outcomes focus on practice and application rather than simply academic knowledge
  • meets essential elements and positive youth development practices
  • flexible to meet any constraints: location, group size, budget, etc.

American Museum of Natural History

Resources for Learning is an easy-to-navigate online database of the American Museum of Natural History’s collection of scientific and cultural educational materials. Educators, families, and students can find activities, articles, evidence and analysis, and more. Resources cover anthropology, astronomy, biology, Earth science, and paleontology.


Captain Planet Foundation

The Captain Planet Foundation will fund as many projects as its annual resources allow. Generally, the range of grants awarded by the Foundation is $250 – $2,500. In order to be considered for funding, proposals must:

  • Promote understanding of environmental issues
  • Focus on hands-on involvement
  • Involve children and young adults 6-18 (elementary through high school)
  • Promote interaction and cooperation within the group
  • Help young people develop planning and problem solving skills
  • Include adult supervision
  • Commit to follow-up communication with the Foundation (specific requirements are explained once the grant has been awarded)


EPA Climate Change Resources

National 4-H Headquarters is pleased to be working closely with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on efforts to communicate the availability of educational resources to Extension professionals, volunteers, and interested in community members.  Recently, the EPA released their website, whcih offers a variety of different resources related to climate change and children’s health that you might find valuable in your educational programs.  Specifically, you might be interested in reviewing additional resources on the site that explore issues related to energy and environmental health.  We hope that these and other resources that we share from the EPA in the future will be valuable additions to your educational resources to support STEM programming in your state and community.

Climate Change InformationEnergy Information

Dragonfly Grants Program

Making the world a better place… one project at a time.

In honor of her life of service and legacy of environmental education through the arts, the Environmental Education Alliance of Georgia has established the Petey Giroux Dragonfly Grants program.  The program will provide mini-grant awards up to $1,000 for projects that use the power of performing and/or visual arts to enhance environmental education.

Grant InformationEE Alliance Website

EEinGeorgia Website & Newsletter

www.EEinGeorgia.org is a resource for your science and environmental programs.  Each month, an e-newsletter is distributed with the latest resources, awards, grants, and other information. You can be added to the newsletter email list by subscribing under the “News” button on the top menu on their website. The Advanced Training for Environmental Education Program is also available through EEA.



Engineering degrees are dominating the professional realm. Professions everywhere are seeking educated individuals who are able to critically solve problems and design their own solutions in our modernizing world.

To foster students’ interests in the engineering realm, TryEngineering’s website offers an array of material that will allow your young problem solver to explore the endless professional possibilities found within the field of engineering.

DiscoverE is an engineering resource guide made available to help mobilize and support volunteers interested in developing our future’s workforce. DiscoverE has programs, activities, and resources available to help you and your young engineer succeed.

TryEngineering.orgDiscoverE Website

Junk Drawer Robotics

Looking for a fun activity designed to engage your students in a hands-on engineering approach to learning? The Georgia 4-H website offers Junk Drawer Robotics, a STEM resource that encourages youth to stimulate their problem solving skills by designing a functional robot. Junk Drawer Robotics challenges students to question the scientific process, combine mechanical and electronic elements to problem solving situations in robotics, and successfully engineer an advanced robotic arm, hand, or gripper.

National 4-H Robotics Curriculum

Georgia Envirothon

The Envirothon is a hands-on, high school academic competition on the environment. Knowledge and skills are tested in outdoor environments such as a nature center, camp, forest, or park. There are two levels of competition, the regional competition, a one-day format, and the state competition, a two-day format. Testing at both competitions involves visiting five stations, one for each study unit, located within easy walking distance from other stations at the competition site. Teams move between competition stations in groups of up to five teams per group. At each station, team examinations are administered by the station coordinator. Tests contain many question formats including narrative responses, true/false, fill in the blank, multiple choice, and matching. Teams may also be given a brief presentation by the station coordinator on ecosystem issues important to that station. Teams have 45 minutes per station except at the state presentation station which is conducted in a “scenario” format which lasts 20 minutes.

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Each district has an Enviroscape model available for checkout. Please contact your district office for availability. Enviroscapes are designed to introduce students to watersheds. From the Enviroscapes website: “We all live in a watershed with water pollution comes from many sources. Nonpoint sources contribute a great deal to the pollution in our water bodies. The combined affect of pollution from many small sources can have a real impact on the quality of our shared water resources.”

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4-H Film Making Resources

The Virtual 4-H Filmmaking Studio & Workshop was developed in collaboration with Montana State University.  The Filmmaking Studio and Workshop is the online space to find tools and resources about video production and “how to make your own film”.  On the home page of the site, you’ll find the main Filmmaking Workshop—an 11 module “virtual workshop”, geared toward youth interested in making Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET) films.  The workshop discusses SET as a primary topic area and delivery mode, but the learning modes and principles apply across mission mandate areas—SET, Healthy Living, and Citizenship.  This is a BETA release and feedback is encouraged, via the “Give Feedback” button on the home page.   Additional resources will be added and tweaked over time, so stay tuned.  Happy Filmmaking!

4-H Film Making Studio & Workshop

Fishes of Georgia

Fishes of Georgia is the work of Albanese, Museum of Natural History Director Byron Freeman and Carrie Straight, a research professional with the University of Georgia Odum School of Ecology. Behind the lists, photographs and distribution maps are thousands of hours spent studying records, sampling streams and inspecting fish preserved in jars. Results include a Fishes of Georgia Atlas database that features more than 159,000 fish records from 19,028 collections, and an easy-to-use Web site that documents the state’s deep lineup of freshwater fish. A 1997 publication reported 219 native freshwater fishes for Georgia. Through the atlas project, that total now stands at 325, placing Georgia among the top three U.S. states for freshwater fish diversity. Environmental consultants, city planners, conservationists and elementary school teachers are all expected to use the site. Species are listed by scientific and common names. Maps show where each fish lives by basin. (Drainage systems often have different fishes.) A tab allows viewers to submit new records.


Food & ANR Careers

Food, Agricultural and Natural Resources Careers, produced through a Cooperative Agreement between USDA’s Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service and Purdue University.

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Future City Competition

The mission of the National Engineers Week Future City Competition is to provide a fun and exciting educational engineering program for sixth- seventh- and eighth-grade students that combines a stimulating engineering challenge with a “hands-on” application to present their vision of a city of the future. This will be accomplished by: Fostering engineering skills, such as teamwork, communication and problem solving skills; Providing interaction among students, teachers, and engineer mentors; Informing the community about the multi-disciplines within the engineering profession; Inspiring students to explore futuristic concepts and careers in engineering.

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Georgia Wild DNR Newsletter

News of nongame and natural habitats of Georgia DNR is available via email. The monthly newsletter is free and features facts, statistics, news, and educational opportunities related to Georgia’s natural resources.


Georgia Protected Species Resource Directory

Georgia DNR’s Wildlife Resources Division website now offers detailed info about many of Georgia’s protected species. You will find other useful links in the right-hand sidebar on their website, too (protected plants, high priority waters, how you can help, etc.).

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Introduce a Girl to Engineering

IAG is a program that introduces young girls in middle school with a strong interest in math and science to the various fields of engineering. This special event rolls into its sixteenth year bringing together middle school students from around the state of Georgia to interact and learn from established women in the fields of engineering and technology.

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To secure America’s global competitiveness, MATHCOUNTS inspires excellence, confidence and curiosity in U.S. middle school students through fun and challenging math problems. With the generous support of all MATHCOUNTS sponsors and volunteers, and leadership of the National Society of Professional Engineers at the local and state levels, MATHCOUNTS is providing today’s students with the foundation for success in science, technology, engineering and mathematics careers. MATHCOUNTS is a national enrichment, coaching and competition program that promotes middle school mathematics achievement through grassroots involvement in every U.S. state and territory. Currently in our 33rd year, MATHCOUNTS is one of the country’s largest and most successful education partnerships involving volunteers, educators, industry sponsors and students. President Obama and former Presidents George W. Bush, Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Reagan have all recognized MATHCOUNTS in White House ceremonies. The MATHCOUNTS program has also received two White House citations as an outstanding private sector initiative. Particularly exciting for our Mathletes® were the hour-long ESPN programs on each of the National Competitions from 2003-2005.


4-H Million Trees

Led by the Belmont (California) 4-H Club, the 4-H Million Trees (4HMT) Project is a large-scale service-learning project with the goal to plant 1,000,000 trees across the United States by 2011 to beautify America, absorb atmospheric carbon dioxide, and combat global climate change.  In 2008, National 4-H Headquarters signed a partnership agreement with Arbor Day Foundation in support of this project.

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NASA Adventures in Rocket Science

This resource is a K-12 Educators/Mentors guide that can be used to supplement your 4-H aerospace/rocketry programs. The guide contains 25 activities designed for informal education venues.

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NASA Engineering Design Challenge: Lunar Plant Growth Chamber

Students in grades K-12 design, analyze, build and assess plant growth chambers that could be used on the moon. Sets of seeds, cinnamon basil seeds that flew on the STS-118 space shuttle mission and control seeds that have not flown, are now available in the Seeds in Space Kit. The kit includes the following items: Five packets of seeds (each packet includes one envelope of space seeds and one envelope of Earth seeds), Liftoff to Learning: Plants in Space DVD, The Ozone Monitoring Garden Lithograph, and The Engineering Design Challenge: Lunar Plant Growth Chamber Bookmark.

The Seeds in Space Kit may be obtained from the Central Operation of Resources for Educators, or CORE.

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NAR: National Association of Rocketry

The National Association of Rocketry (NAR) is the organized body of rocket hobbyists. Chartered NAR sections conduct launches, connect modelers and support all forms of sport rocketry. NAR was founded in 1957 to help young people learn about science and math through building and safely launching their own models. The NAR is a nationwide network of local clubs with experienced rocketeers available to provide advice and launch sites for your flights.

They welcome beginners and students who want to enjoy rocketry and learn to fly rockets safely. Many adult NAR members are “mentors” and assist individuals or schools in their local area. The purpose of the partnership is to develop an ongoing exchange between the organizations that will help students learn about model rocketry and other aerospace topics.

If you would like to request a free copy of the NAR guidebook and CD Rom, please email me at melmel@uga.edu.  Supplies are limited.

List of Clubs

NSTA Science Teacher Grab Bag

  • NASA Blast Back to School Page
    • NASA offers educational resources for all grade levels, kindergarten through college, as well as resources for the informal education community. Visit the website to find educational resources to bring the space agency’s missions into your classroom and details about NASA events taking place in your area.
  • Testing the Robotic Hand
    • NASA engineer Larry Li built a robotic hand that can catch a baseball and grasp a wrench. Show students how it works with this short film from The Futures Channel. A hands-on math/algebra activity for grades 5–7 accompanies the film.
  • Ready Classroom Emergency Preparedness Site
    • With hurricane season beginning, you’ll want to learn about the science of hurricanes and how they are predicted. Prepare your classroom with free emergency preparedness resources, and use the National Preparedness Map to find out about severe weather that could hit your area and what precautions to take.
  • Online Science
    • This site contains videos, activities, and podcasts for all ages from the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago. Classroom activities, such as building an electric motor, are aligned with learning standards. Videos depict baby chicks hatching, for example, while podcasts feature interviews with science experts.
  • One Million Acts of Green
    • The One Million Acts of Green Program works closely with the National Wildlife Federation, The Climate Project, and its website partner GreenNexxus to provide high-quality, age-appropriate resources to teach students in grades K–12 about climate change. Resources include teacher and parent guides and slideshows.
  • Teaching the Process of Science
    • This module was created by Stanford University’s Anne E. Egger and addresses practical teaching questions like “what is the process of science,” “why should I teach it,” and “how do I teach it.” The module also includes several how-to examples and a list of additional resources for integrating the process of science into teaching at all levels, using different techniques.
  • The KidWind Project
    • The KidWind Project is a team of teachers, engineers, and scientists committed to innovative energy education. Their website provides information about wind energy, lesson plans for all grade levels, and ideas for building an educational wind turbine.
  • Plant Talking Points
    • The Botanical Society of America designed this classroom tool for sharing ideas and concepts highlighting the role plants play in our lives and in the world around us. Teachers can use it to get students thinking about and exploring plant-related topics.
  • Pulse of the Planet’s Educator Resources
    • K–12 lesson plans use Pulse of the Planet radio programs and sounds as a focus for learning activities on a range of subjects. The lesson plans are aligned to national education standards and accompanied by downloadable audio files. (Free registration is required.)

National Lab Day

National Lab Day is a national awareness raising and networking for hands-on learning.  It is supported by Motorola, HP, NSTA, NSF, and others.  It cross cuts into efforts such as STEM, Earth Day and No Child Left Inside.

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National Soil Project at Northeastern University

Dr. Geoffrey Davies and a research team are working on a project to do soil analyses of agricultural topsoils from different parts of the U.S. 4-H clubs can help to collect samples that can be analyzed to give a much clearer assessment of the health of the Nation’s soils. 4-H members and families can help to contribute to this national soil research project.

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PBS Design Squad Trash to Treasure Contest

Turn your trash into treasure and be on TV! Recycle, reuse, and re-engineer everyday materials into an out-of-the box invention.

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Reach for the Stars – National Rocket Contest

Contestants in the annual Reach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition will build and launch a solid-fuel powered rocket at an event held in their area. The rockets (Alpha style) and engines (‘A’ class) are the same ones used in the 4-H rocketry program. They can be launched from any open area (sports fields are great) and require no special license or permit. The competitions are being hosted by Challenger Learning Centers, schools, YMCAs, Scouts, 4-H, Boys & Girls Clubs and other youth groups nationwide. The closest average landing (by parachute) to a target after two launches – wins. Local winner’s results are sent to competition headquarters to determine the state winners. As many as 100 State Winners (1 Youth & 1 Collegiate from each state) will be invited to Space Camp / US Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama to compete for the national titles under an ‘October Sky’. The iconic location, Homer Hickam Field at Space Camp is the perfect setting for the Reach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition finals. We promise the winners “memories to last a lifetime and bragging rights for generations to come.” The annual RFTS Youth Competition is a STEM education outreach of the Christa McAuliffe / Challenger Learning Center. Open for ages 10 to 18 it runs continuously. It is a safe, fun, affordable way to promote.

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Remotely Operated Vehicles

Young engineers curious about the depths of the ocean are encouraged to compete in MATEs annual Underwater Robotics Competition. The Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) Center works to spread awareness of ocean-related careers, and aims to improve marine technical education to prepare our nation’s future workforce for ocean occupations. The Underwater Robotics Competition challenges students to build and design an ROV (remotely operated vehicle) with a team of like-minded individuals according to their assigned mission and level. Missions vary and are targeted for K-12 and college level students. The missions are designed to stimulate real-life situations that occur in the ocean workplace. The ROV competition encourages students to become young engineers and entrepreneurs as teams will work to efficiently and effectively manufacture, market, and sell “products” they build according to their assigned mission.

Competition ResourcesMore Information

School Gardens

The University of Georgia’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences garden initiative has provided young gardeners with an abundance of do it yourself gardening resources. The resources made available by the University of Georgia’s Extension webpage are designed to help you and your aspiring gardeners bring their own community or school garden to life.

The resources available offer a wide range of curriculum including hands-on activities that explore the basics of gardening from sowing the seed to preparing your garden grown products in the classroom. The curriculum is designed for kindergarten through eighth grade students, but all available resources are beneficial for any aspiring gardener regardless of age.

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Science Behind Our Food

The Science Behind Our Food National Science Foundation grant began in July 2003 and ended in June 2006. This resource is a few years old, but is still full of useful lesson plans and activities.

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Science Buddies

This Web site is designed primarily for science fair projects, but these activities also make great projects for 4-H science displays or science learning activities that relate to 4-H projects. Projects are by grade-levels so they’re age-appropriate. There are discussions about topics like scientific method, doing research and constructing a hypothesis. It also has an “Ask an Expert” feature. This can be a useful resource for 4-H staff, volunteers and members for 4-H STEM.

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Southern Region 4-H2O Curriculum

The Southern Region 4H2O curriculum is now finalized and online.  It is a University of Kentucky publication, but we are a collaborating partner and worked together on it through the Southern Region Water Program.  In fact several of you will find yourselves in the acknowledgment section as you were involved in the pilot of this curriculum! Find links to units 1-4 of the 4H2O curriculum below.

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STEM Takes Flight: Science & Aircrafts

Lift, thrust, drag, and weight, the four forces that make flying great! Young engineers looking to explore the heights of flying will find an abundance of resources available on JACO’s Aerospace and Industrial website. The resources available will help aspiring aerospace engineers’ dreams lift off the ground as it teaches them the basic of flying.

STEM Takes Flight has provided young aerospace engineers with basic information, activities, and tools they may need for their aircraft and dreams to take flight.

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Weather & Climate

To address the nation’s increased need for science and climate literacy, the Florida 4-H Program and the Southeastern Climate Consortium collaboratively produced a toolkit that outlines important curriculum from the USDA’s “Climate Change to Climate Variability” grant for outreach education.

The toolkit curriculum, based on the National Science Education Standards, details experiential and inquiry-based activities targeted for upper elementary school children. The Weather and Climate Variability Toolkit includes activities designed to increase student’s basic knowledge and understanding of topics relating to weather and climate, and aims to inspire students to actively explore careers related to these fields.

Download Toolkit