Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy’s Youth Outreach programs provide an inquiry-based experience for students, with the goal of encouraging all students to see themselves as capable scientists, engineers, and mathematicians.
Our programs employ the practices scientists use to study the world — questioning, forming hypotheses, conducting investigations, and collecting and analyzing data to effectively teach STEM content while developing scientific habits of mind at the same time. The curriculum for all IMSA student enrichment programs is created by IMSA curriculum writers, who also teach our virtual programs and are the lead educators for our in-person programs. While all of our lessons and activities are aligned with Next Generation Science Standards, the focus is on fun and creativity. Students in our programs are encouraged to explore, take risks, and have ownership over their own learning.
Research shows that high-quality experiences in school are necessary but insufficient for young people to get and stay involved with science, and to be equipped with the skills necessary to pursue STEM beyond high school graduation. (State of STEM in Out-of-School Time in Chicago, 2013). IMSA enrichment programs, with their focus on inquiry and integration with real-world situations, provide experiences that develop students’ positive dispositions toward STEM.
We have an array of STEM-based summer camps for communities in the Aurora, Metro East, and Springfield, IL areas! Registration will open in mid-February.
School Year 22-23 Student Programs
Student enrichment programs this year will include the options detailed below. STEM League programs are capped at 40 students to ensure a high level of engagement. Class sizes are intentionally kept small (10-15) in all other programs that are mostly synchronous to ensure a robust, teacher-led experience that allows for individual attention.
For any virtual programs, participants will be responsible for obtaining course materials – (the materials list will be linked to the descriptions of each course so you can view it prior to registration.)