Teen Science Café out-of-school programs are a free, fun way for teens to explore the big advances in science and technology affecting their lives. Teens and STEM experts engage in lively conversations and activities to explore a topic deeply.
The TSCN can help you get started now.
What is the Teen Science Café Network?
We are a community of practice providing the highest quality resources and support to organizations who implement a teen science café. Our members are committed to help one another and continually improve the teen science café experiences and their impacts.
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What checklist(s) do you use for different sci cafe formats?
In getting ready to create a teen cafe, the question asked was not where do you find teens to take ownership of the program but what are the logistical points that should be checked off each time you do a program? Do these change if you are doing a different format – like a demo vs. a trivia contest? How do you include teens in developing these protocols (we’re always looking for ways to provide hands-on learning opportunities)? Looking forward to your feedback!
In Arlington County Virginia we implement TSC via two high schools in the Arlington Public Schools system. There we have cadres of students who are very keep the TSC going. And there are mentoring adults (the teachers) that see them every day that keeps them motivated and keeps them on track vis a vis pre-event tasks involved in eacg TSC event.
Moreover, it is the case that school is at the center of the students’ social lives. They have TSC events during lunch and other free periods and immediately following the final school bell. The schools also help us identify and reach at-risk or disadvantaged teens, and provide the structure for year-to-year sustainability.
We differentiate the TSC from the normal school curriculum by the fact that the normal school day lessons are teacher and standards driven, while the TSC events are student-curiosity driven.
Our TSC events are evolving to be a place where the students can discuss a range of scientific ideas. We can almost imagine these events being in the mold of the Sommerfeld cafes in Munich around 1910.