learn / 2016

Mobile STEM Project is a school based initiative designed to eliminate disparities in STEM education

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Grants Challenge by Avalon Carver Community Center

In an effort to minimize the achievement gaps in math and science, the Mobile STEM project provides science and engineering engineering that make learning exciting and engaging for South LA students.


Please describe your project proposal.

The Mobile STEM project will provide twenty-six (26) one-hour and fifteen minute weekly scientific investigation and engineering design projects for students in 3rd through 5th grade. Project-based activities provide in-depth, kinesthetic and creative learning experiences that are hands-on and learner-centered. The learning experiences actively engage students in inquiry-based and problem-solving practices to achieve depth of core ideas in the disciplines of science.

Which of the learn metrics will your proposal impact?​

  • Proficiency in English and Language Arts and Math
  • Early education
  • Student education pipeline
  • Youth unemployment and underemployment

In what areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • South LA
  • LAUSD

Describe in greater detail how your proposal will make LA the best place to learn?

Avalon Carver’s Mobile STEM Project is an educational school based initiative that is designed to eliminate disparities in access to STEM education, promote STEM literacy, and inspire the next generation of scientist, engineers, innovators, and American STEM professionals.

The Mobile STEM project helps broaden the participation of women and minorities in science and math related disciplines. Our goal is to make LA the best place to learn by 2050 by exposing more than 5,000 students a year in underserved communities to a high quality STEM education.

Early exposure to STEM is essential in preparing students to face the challenges of a science and technology driven society. Immersing students into STEM education during elementary school, teaches them to become critical thinkers, creative problem solvers, effective communicators, and to work collaboratively with their peers.

Students who participate in the program gain the skills and abilities required to be competitive in the 21st century global market. STEM activities and workshops create experiences that inspires the next generation of innovators, entrepreneurs, and world changers. Most jobs of the future will require a basic understanding of math and science. In fact, STEM degree holders have a higher income even in non-STEM careers and play a key role in the sustained growth and stability of the local and U.S. economy. In addition to providing students with a quality STEM education, the Mobile STEM project supports teachers and administrators. Our goal is to build a STEM education pipeline that will begin with our current elementary programs, and expand into the local middle and high schools by 2017. The Mobile STEM project supports teachers and administrators by focusing on: -Understanding the literacy processes and the pedagogy that determines how students learn, what they need to understand and should be able to do to meet state standards -Raising expectations for students and encouraging creative thinking -Catering to the diverse needs of students from different cultural and ethnic backgrounds -Engaging students in challenging learning experiences -Providing professional development workshops that focuses on STEM academic vocabulary and effective literacy teaching across various disciplines

Please explain how you will define and measure success for your project.​

The Mobile STEM project has helped students gain a greater level of enthusiasm and positive regard towards science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Outcomes are measured using the California Standards Test (CST) for science, a pre and post assessment survey and a multilayered scientific portfolio.

The use of the pre and post assessment survey will assess 1) the impact of the program on students and teachers 2) the effectiveness of the program content and delivery, 3) how we can improve our teaching methods and curricula for future programming and 4) Students’ scientific literacy will be measured based on specific knowledge and understanding gained during the program. Information on the types of responses we receive, the quality of responses, and the amount of data we collect will allow us to improve the tools themselves as well as the overall evaluation plan. At the end of the program, students will be able to demonstrate a detailed understanding of key issues using practical solutions to solve real-world problems.

Each student receives a scientific portfolio, which is a multi-layered assessment tool that documents and showcases student work and achievements during the program. Portfolios will be evaluated using a standardized rubric to determine how well the students have developed specific knowledge about STEM issues and STEM literacy.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed?

  • Money
  • Volunteers