Elementary STEM Club Program received two JCEP/ESP Creative Works Awards!

By: Meghan Thoreau, OSU Extension Educator

Teays Valley’s Elementary STEM Club Program receives two Joint Council of Extension Professions/Epsilon Sigma Phi (JCEP/ESP) Creative Works Awards! Meghan Thoreau and Judy Walley received a 2nd Place Creative Works Awards for Follow-up Program News Story, STEM Students Get Introduced to Aerospace Careers; a related blog post, Club Highlights from 2018-2019.

Figure 1: students engaging in chemistry, coding, and electronics. Photos by Meghan Thoreau.

Elementary STEM Club is actively programming through its third year of STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) programming, engaging approximately a hundred 4th and 5th graders in after school hands-on STEM challenges and career exploration throughout the academic school year. Judy Walley, Teays Valley High School Chemistry Teacher, and Meghan Thoreau, OSU Extension Educator, co-teach the program, which also involves over two dozen high school mentor students.

Figure 2: Left photo is Emma Rico, student mentor, passing out honey samples from local honey producers and in the right photo is Allison Cheek, student mentor, assisting with a chemical and physical reaction lab. Photos by Meghan Thoreau.

The student mentors assist with club activities while themselves gaining both soft and technical skills, leadership, community service, and college/career exploration opportunities. This past year our student mentors not only assist with the program club sessions but have contributed to the program’s blog site as STEM bloggers! Emma Rico and Allison Cheek, recent Teays Valley High School Students (now graduates), Meghan Thoreau, and Judy Walley received a 3rd Place Creative Works Award for this Program Blog.

Quick links to students’ posts: Buzzing Around STEM Club, by Emma Rico and How STEM Club has Impacted Me: a high school student mentor highlight by Allison Cheek.

The Elementary STEM Club Program is a community’s success! Thank you all for participating and contributing to this important STEM program!






Tech Recipe: Starting A Scholastic Drone Racing Team (fact sheet)

By: Meghan Thoreau, OSU Extension Educator

Schools interested in starting a drone racing team may have some basic questions, such as, “Is drone racing legal?”, “When did drone racing start?”, “How does drone racing work?” This fact sheet is written in a recipe format to provide simple how-to guidance for prospective schools and teachers who want to learn more about what it takes to start a drone racing team, such as materials and people needed, the skill-building benefits scholastic teams offer, equipment cost estimates, online resources, and instruction on how to develop a practice schedule and racing events. Fact sheet available at: https://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/cdfs-1576


Scholastic drone teams propel lifelong learners. Student teams encourage and build enjoyment, teamwork, curiosity, critical thinking, courage, and creativity.

Video of 2019 Circleville City Schools District drone racing team, Maker X video highlight, an event held in Columbus, OH, by Meghan Thoreau, retrieved from: youtu.be/ITxWx-4jQXU.