Designed primarily for African American females and females situated in poverty, Sisters e S.T.E.A.M. provides a culturally-relevant science curriculum that transforms the way that girls understand and approach the STEAM careers. Sisters e S.T.E.A.M. seeks to empower young women through hands-on inquiry-based science lessons from the STEAM fields. Primarily delivered as an after-school program in Woodland Hills and through pop-up programs throughout Allegheny County, Sisters e S.T.E.A.M. utilized real world applications to connect girls to science content that is aligned to the PA Core and the Next Generation Science Standards. Sisters e S.T.E.A.M. began as an innovative idea through Teachers Leading Change and has grown into an independent science program in its second year of operation.
Sisters e S.T.E.A.M. transforms the way that young women looks at the STEAM careers, generally introducing young women to a successful experience with science for the first time. This program is designed for young women who typically do not have the opportunity to engage in science enrichment programs. Currently, Sisters e S.T.E.A.M. is delivered through five core units in an after school program. Examples units are: Hair & Cosmetic Chemistry, Newton’s Laws of Motion through Dance, Ecological BioDiversity, and Thoughts & Bots (Robotics).
Sisters e S.T.E.A.M. immerses young women into the STEAM fields and provides a peer mentoring component with the chief goal of reducing girl on girl disruptions throughout the day. The peer mentoring or “e S.T.E.A.M (esteem)” part of Sisters e S.T.E.A.M is delivered through targeted lessons, peer support, & team competitions. In this two-pronged approach to supporting young women, we look at the issues that are of upmost concern to them and use program variables to provide opportunities to learn and grow as a team and as an individual. In addition, this program moves them towards college and/or career readiness. Our e S.T.E.A.M. curriculum addresses the realities of STEM careers for the young women and provides them with the requisite skills and experiences.