Blueprints to Blast Off NASA Project





Please explore these resources created in partnership with NASA: 

Basics of Blastoff: Learn how Newton’s Three Laws of Motion launch a rocket, and create solutions to launch the greatest payload possible to the classroom ceiling in this workshop this explosive workshop. Your students will see what it takes to get astronauts into orbit, traveling 17,500 miles per hour, and make learn what goes on inside of a rocket engine all by observing and launching safe rockets indoors.

Give Me Space: Space is one of the harshest environments we can imagine and it takes a toll on the mind and body, especially on the long trip to Mars. This lesson investigates the mental and physical challenges of travel in deep space and answers questions like “what would happen to my body in space?” and “how do astronauts stay healthy in orbit?” Students will also work together to come up with the perfect crew for a Mars spaceflight.

Life on Mars: Do your students have what it takes to run their own city on the desolate wastes of Mars? You can find out in this lesson that examines the harsh environment of the red planet and compares it to the only home we’ve ever known, Earth. Your students will work together to steer the future of their own settlements on Mars in an interactive story telling game where they will have to choose a landing site, decide who will lead their city, and deal with Martian disasters. Along the way they’ll be able to use their knowledge of the Martian environment to make decisions and design solutions to out-of-this-world problems.

Strategies & Ideas

Since you are an educator, parents, children and our community at large look to you to help instruct, inspire, and empower our future work force. With STEMisphere, you are able to view a collection of resources for STEM education to help you reach this important goal. Visit STEMisphere to help enhance your science, technology, engineering and mathematics instruction.

  • Base science, technology, engineering and math education in inquiry, – foster curiosity!
  • Integrate curriculum – the world isn't separated in silos, neither should instruction and learning!
  • Learn together – create opportunities for project based group learning activities, pertinent to everyday experiences!
  • Grow awareness of careers – the jobs of today and tomorrow require strong STEM knowledge!

Carnegie STEM Excellence Pathway

The Carnegie STEM Excellence Pathway is an online tool that assesses current STEM programming and determine what successful improvement of STEM education will look like for your institution.

Carnegie STEM Excellence Pathway MapPathway Workshops: Our workshops can support your engagement in the Carnegie STEM Excellence Pathway. Carnegie Science Center offers half or full day facilitated workshops which can be held onsite at a school, remotely, or at Carnegie Science Center. Learn more! 

Pathway Provider Training Institute: Our ‘train the trainer’ series allows you to lead Pathway workshops to schools and organizations in your region. Pathway Providers will receive a full set of training materials, in-depth knowledge of the online Pathway tools, models for workshops and implementation strategies, regular online webinars to support your work, and online access to our Pathway Provider Portal. Learn more!

Educator Resources

Professional Development

The Pittsburgh Regional STE(A)M Ecosystem – Expanding opportunities and enhancing quality in STEM and STEAM Learning. The STE(A)M Ecosystem is a regional collaborative comprised of individuals and organizations who seek to equitably equip and empower learners to use S cience, T echnology, E ngineering, A rts, and M ath to better themselves and their world. We prioritize interdisciplinary learning and high-quality programming that is relevant to students’ lives and future careers. View STE(A)M Ecosystem Recommended Resources!

Carnegie Science Center Teaching Excellence Academy – Carnegie Science Center’s Teaching Excellence Academy offers educators opportunities to sharpen their STEM pedagogy skills. Programs are offered for educators in all grade levels, with specific workshops in STEM, early learner education, and the engineering design process.

The PNC Grow Up Great Teacher’s Toolkit – Early childhood educators can use videos and instructional techniques to deepen children’s understanding of arts and science concepts, and develop their vocabulary and oral language. Teacher and family resources are available to help provide the best possible learning experiences for young children. 

ASSET STEM Education – ASSET STEM Education (Achieving Student Success through Excellence in Teaching) is a national Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education improvement nonprofit. It fosters STEM fluency and college/career readiness by providing educators of students pre-K through career with highly effective professional development, hands-on educational materials and consulting services. More than 7,000 teachers and 225,000 students across the nation are impacted by ASSET's programs.

Math & Science Collaborative – The Math & Science Collaborative is comprised of representatives of school districts, non-profit organizations, institutions of higher education, and other stakeholders committed to strengthening the teaching and learning of mathematics and science.

Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center – Many of the PSC Programs for Educators provide content material on-line as a resource for K-12 teachers. Many also offer workshops (with Act 48 hours) on how to effectively use the materials.

Carnegie Science Awards

Know a remarkable educator? Nominate them for a Carnegie Science Award, the region's most prestigious award for excellence in STEM education. Each year, Carnegie Science Awards recognize outstanding leaders in STEM education whose commitment to innovative and engaging teaching methods will help to inspire the next generation of scientists. Their stories showcase our region's excellence and inspire the science and technology leaders of tomorrow. Learn More2020 Carnegie Science Award Winners


The purpose of education is to help every child flourish, no matter what happens in life. In a fast-changing world, education must adapt to keep up. The world is full of inspiring innovations, but they can struggle to spread beyond their immediate environments. That's why HundrED discovers, researches and shares impactful and scalable K12 innovations with the world, like STEMisphere and The Carnegie STEM Excellence Pathway, for free. 

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Carnegie STEM Excellence Pathway Partners

video icon>>View our Pathway Partners' Community of Practice Series

STEM Success Stories

Check out what other Pathway Partners are doing to improve STEM education:

Blackhawk School District creates STEAM web page to Connect with Families and the Community

View All Success Stories

Additional Links

STEMisphere Resource Guide to Astronomy
PNC Teachers Toolkit

Laser Classroom
Research Documents and Articles

Looking for great STEM field trips? Look here:
Carnegie Science Center
Carnegie Museum of Natural History
Phipps Conservatory
National Aviary
Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium
Pittsburgh Glass Center

Field Testing of Elementary, Middle, and High School Science Assessment Items: 
AAAS Project 2061 is developing assessment items to measure elementary, middle, and high school students’ understanding of ideas about energy and recruiting teachers willing to field test multiple-choice test items with their students.
Visit the AAAS Science Assessment Website at

Carnegie Science Center Mobile FAB Lab Digital Maker Space 
Purchase your own mobile making program: Carnegie Science Center offers convenient and affordable packages to help you purchase and implement your own Mobile FAB Lab

Early Learners

Carnegie Science Center has been working since 2009 to develop and deliver a rigorously prototyped and independently evaluated model of early childhood STEM engagement. 

Children are encouraged to learn about science and the arts through the PNC Grow Up Great Lesson Center. Access these free, fun activities and do them at home with your child. 

View the PNC Teacher's Toolkit for ideas on activities that may encourage your kids!

View All Early Childhood Resources