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STEM Resources and Support

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Guides to implementing design challenges in the science and CTE classroom


These TEKS-aligned teacher resources:

  • provide background knowledge on concepts;
  • offer the opportunity to practice skills related to collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking;
  • support the development of time management, adaptability, and innovative thinking;
  • connect to careers and real-world content applications;
  • outline the basic components of a STEM classroom;
  • present guidance on how to use an engineering notebook; and
  • scaffold the engineering design process using facilitation questions and sentence stems.​
All of these foundational pieces support student growth and achievement to successfully complete design challenges.
stem-k-2-cover-1 stem35-1
Grades K-2 Grades 3-5
stem6-8 stem-9-12-cover-small
Grades 6-8 - NEW! Grades 9-12 - NEW!


Design challenges encourage students to think about real-world issues and how students would solve them using available tools and materials. Some challenges even include a budget component. Each challenge is aligned to the TEKS, which are listed in the teacher guide portion of the challenge. The appendix sections provide more information and tips about implementing critical skills, setting up engineering notebooks, and establishing student expectations and roles. The appendices also include reproducible masters and sample rubrics.
Digital access to downloadable content, including the product and accompanying suggested resources, is provided through with a user license set up at time of purchase.
STEMulating Design Challenges in Science
$75 per grade band
Order at using the product IDs below:
For questions about this resource, or to set up customized professional development, e-mail






K-12 Statewide STEM Teacher Training

May 17–18, 2022

The Texas Education Agency is rolling out a two-day immersive state-wide professional development to preparecampus administrators STEM leaders to shape, support, and sustain STEM initiatives within their district or campus. Participants will learn by doing, engaging directly in the instructional approaches most critical to the STEM endeavor: project-based learning, design-based challenges, and computational thinking. Working backwards from a model vision for STEM education, the session culminates with leaders collaboratively planning for real-life implementation of STEM programming. Learn more and register for this FREE session here.





STEMulating Design Challenges in Science, Grades K-5

June 16-17, 2022  |  8:30 a.m.—3:30 p.m.  (2-Day Face-to-Face Session)
Explore ways to implement TEKS-aligned design challenges in your science classroom. Experience using the engineering design process to address design challenges in order to support student growth and success in your classroom and beyond. Participants will receive one printed copy and digital access to either STEMulating  Design Challenges in Science for Grades K-2 or STEMulating Design Challenges in Science for Grades 3-5.  Learn more and register here.





STEMulating Design Challenges in Science, Grades 6-8
June 21-22, 2022  |  8:30 a.m.—3:30 p.m. (2-Day Face-to-Face Session)
Explore ways to implement TEKS-aligned design challenges in a middle school science classroom. Experience using the engineering design process to address design challenges that support student growth and success in the classroom and beyond.
Participants will receive a copy of STEMulating Design Challenges in Science, Grades 6-8 as well as a license for digital access. Learn more and register here.



View the full calendar of Science workshops available from Region 4 Science here.  For customized professional development, e-mail


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Interested in taking Region 4 Science courses when it's most convenient for YOU? We offer several online courses that can be taken over 30 days, at your own pace. Earn as many as 6 CPE from the comfort of your computer! For more information, follow the links below. For more information about these sessions, e-mail



STEM Literacy

Define and discuss STEM literacy and its importance. Explore strategies that can be used before, during, and after reading that allow for independent and collaborative student work. Examine how to safely research on the Internet using various search engines and tools to curate information. Complete the course by putting new skills into practice. Learn more and register here.



Getting STEM Ready

Explore what having a STEM ready classroom entails. Define STEM and discuss what a STEM classroom looks and feels like. Consider materials, where to find them, and then how to manage and design makerspaces. Experience STEM in practice and conclude by mapping out how to embed STEM into your classroom. Learn more and register here.




The Engineering Design Process

Explore the engineering design process (EDP). Learn how STEM experiences are supported and explore the key components of the EDP through the lens of teacher and student actions. Participants will leave with a design challenge and ideas for implementation, including supporting students as they develop their STEM thinking. Learn more and register here.


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The Region 4 Texas EcosySTEM is a part of Texas Education Agency's (TEA) statewide Texas EcosySTEM. This collaborative effort unites various stakeholders to work towards the common goal of increasing access for young people to STEM-rich learning environments so that they are engaged and have mastered the necessary skills for success in STEM careers.


The Texas EcosySTEM has created a statewide STEM steering committee as well as regional STEM hubs (such as the Region 4 EcosySTEM) with representation from:

  • Formal and informal K-12 educators
  • Workforce Development Boards
  • Chambers of Commerce
  • STEM Business/Industry professionals
  • Education Service Centers
  • Post-secondary institutions
  • Non-profits
  • Other relevant stakeholders

Learn all about the Region 4 Texas EcosySTEM Collaborative here.


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