STEM Resources

Each of the items listed below are recommended STEM activities that we personally have been involved with and can endorse. Students in the CyberLearning Academies generally gain access to these activities after they reach the Bronze level on their leaderboards, although in some circumstances we may give students access to these activities right away. We have partnerships and relationships with each of these organizations, and we can schedule training webinars to help you implement the STEM activities in your school. We really endorse STEAM learning (the A stands for ‘Art’), but is used less commonly, so we use STEM so we don’t confuse anybody. Please contact Dr. Anthony Betrus at if you are interested in learning more.


MinecraftEdu provides products and services that make it easy for educators to use Minecraft in the classroom. The NEF has a partnership with MinecraftEDU, and we can bring Minecarft to each student in your school via a local server with unlimited users (30 concurrent users max is recommended). We recommend signing up for their newsletter (at the bottom of the linked page).

Launched in 2013,® is a non-profit dedicated to expanding participation in computer science by making it available in more schools, and increasing participation by women and underrepresented students of color. Our vision is that every student in every school should have the opportunity to learn computer science. We believe computer science and computer programming should be part of the core curriculum in education, alongside other science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses, such as biology, physics, chemistry and algebra.

PBS Nova Labs

NOVA Labs is a new digital platform where “citizen scientists” can actively participate in the scientific process. From predicting solar storms and designing renewable energy systems to tracking cloud movements and learning cybersecurity strategies, NOVA Labs participants can take part in real-world investigations by visualizing, analyzing, and sharing the same data that scientists use.

Lego Mindstorms Robotics

FIRST® LEGO® League introduces young people, ages 9 to 14* (grades 4-8), to the fun and excitement of science and technology. Each of the NEF team members have served as judges for regional Lego Robotics competitions. We find that it provides students with opportunities they simply can’t get anywhere else, especially in regards to Team building and Complex problem solving.

The following STEM activities are intended to serve as a tool for exploration by your academy students. The spirit of a good STEM activity is play, and even better, free play. We intend to have these activities to become available to students after they reach the Bronze level (.33 Grade Level Increase) in both Math and Reading. You simply need to work with your students to choose your activities, and then encourage students to play and explore, develop their own goals, and document their journey. Successful implementation includes teacher facilitation, which means that teachers should be familiar with the various resources themselves, at least enough to recognize good learning. In the end, try not to “overthink” the use of these resources, as the ultimate goal is to develop authentic real world skills, including critical thinking, problem solving, communication, and teamwork.

Competitions and Contests


Free (and nearly free) Apps and Websites

STEM Tools, Materials, and Devices


Electronic Circuitry




3D Printing


STEM Games




Math STEM Games


Virtual and Augmented Reality


Apps for Robots


Commercial STEM Resources

STEM Articles, News, and Resources


Mindset and STEM


Whitehouse STEM Initiative 2016



Teaching with Games: Lessons/Standards/Pedagogy


Skill Development/Jobs


Professional Development and other STEM Resources