STEM PD, or STEM Professional Development, is a compilation of professional development and learning opportunities for out-of-school time educators and professionals. Please note that this is not an exhaustive list of opportunities. If there is an opportunity that you would like to suggest, please complete this form.


The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs (NC CAP) has partnered with Afterschool Coaching for Reflective Educators in STEM (ACRES) to provide FREE professional development opportunities to out-of-school-time professionals statewide. The ACRES Project supports out-of-school providers in rural settings. Front line staff come together online and in person to share, discuss, and receive coaching from the Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance and the Noyce Foundation.

Each participant is expected to participate in three live sessions for each cohort and is an active member. Stipends are offered to participants that complete pre-and-post surveys. To learn more about stipend eligibility or professional development opportunities, visit the ACRES FAQs or contact the ACRES team.

If you would like to host a private workshop for your team, please complete this form.  

Asking Purposeful Questions

Questions are the beginning of a path towards discovery, imagination, and STEM exploration. How can we help youth expand and clarify their thinking and develop their reasoning through the questions we ask them? This module is designed for educators who have some experience facilitating STEM learning and would like to grow in their practice within a supportive group of other educators. 

To learn more and register, click here 

Developing STEM Identities and Making Career Connections

How do you help youth recognize their connection to and role in STEM? How do you help youth learn about STEM careers? In this module, participants experience several easy-to-implement strategies, including a photo-elicitation activity, learn about how youth form their STEM identities, and then learn how to conduct related activities with youth.

To learn more and register, click here 

Elevating Youth Voice & Choice

How often do youth in your program get to choose what they’re investigating or designing, the materials they might use and/or how they engage with the work? In this module, participants try out strategies for elevating youth voice and choice and apply the ideas as they redesign a STEM activity to incorporate a greater variety of youth input.

To learn more and register, click here 

Exploring Youth Understanding in STEM

What can we do to find out what youth know about a particular topic without resorting to a quiz or test? What strategies can we use before, during, and following an activity to surface youths’ understanding? In this module, participants will first clarify the purpose of formative assessment and then learn several easy-to-implement strategies for monitoring youths’ understanding.

To learn more and register, click here 

Modeling Engineering Practices
Engineering has become a staple of STEM programming for youth. How can we confidently bring engineering into our programming and support youth as they engage in problem-solving? In this module, participants gain first-hand experience with engineering by solving a design problem. They examine the components of the engineering design process and discuss ways to model the process with youth.

To learn more and register, click here 

Modeling Math Practices
Are you looking for fun ways to help youth build number sense and problem-solving skills? Math can take on new meaning when it is integrated into daily routines in our afterschool programs. In this module, afterschool educators will explore and practice strategies for making math engaging and accessible.

To learn more and register, click here 

Modeling Science Practices

How can we make sure that our ‘ hands-on’ science experiences for youth are also ‘minds on?’ In this module, participants learn how to support youth as engage in the science practices to learn science ideas, including planning and conducting investigations around testable questions. They’ll talk about the similarities and differences of questioning in science versus questioning in engineering contexts.

To learn more and register, click here 

Ready, Set, STEM! Asking Purposeful Questions

Are you ready to bring meaningful STEM learning into your program? This module offers educators who are new to facilitating STEM the opportunity to build supportive relationships with other educators while exploring the principles of STEM learning. This module combines an introduction to STEM facilitation with the skill of Asking Purposeful Questions.

To learn more and register, click here 

Virtualizing Your Programs and Activities

Have you felt like remote learning during COVID-19 has been hectic and stressful? Well, you are not alone with those feelings. Join this cohort and participate in highly interactive coaching sessions. You will reflect on what you have done and what you could do to virtualize your out-of-school STEM offerings. Bring your examples and questions. Tips, tricks, and tools will be shared as small groups come together to practice and hear success stories

To learn more and register, click here 

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