Additional STEM Work

At RPCS, we incorporate science, technology, engineering and math into our curriculum and programs from our youngest learners! 8th Grade Accelerated STEM Program
This year-long course prepares girls with strong abilities in math and science to participate in the Upper School accelerated science sequence. As part of their preparation, students in the course will participate in national STEM competitions such as the Toshiba ExploraVision program and the  eCYBERMISSION competition.

STEM-Plus: Preschool–Grade 8
At RPCS, we recognize that intellectual passions can arise at any stage in life. But it is the early years that the National Research Council has identified as especially critical to developing an interest in STEM, and for that reason, we have identified an intellectual toolkit (see below) to provide our  students with the skills to nurture this interest. Integrated into the full Preschool through 8th Grade curriculum, our students employ this toolkit regularly in problem-solving projects that can include:

  • Using sustainable practices to grow and harvest gardens on campus
  • Participating in a bridge-building design competition
  • Creating and analyzing fraction quilts
  • Learning computer code to build unique designs with newly found skills


STEM Preschool - 8 Program Toolkit

  • Perseverance
  • Knowledge is interdisciplinary
  • Independent thinkers/risk takers
  • Collaboration
  • Curiosity
  • Knowledge evolves over time
  • Understanding has levels of complexity for the same idea
  • Can reflect on progress
  • Comfortable with making mistakes
  • Knowledge has consequences for the social and natural world
  • Effects have causes
  • Interconnectedness of all knowledge
  • Critical consumer of knowledge
  • Comfortable using technology
  • Measurement
  • Design
  • Graphing
  • Communication
  • Computational thinking
  • Identifying a problem
  • Creating a plan to solve a problem
  • Supporting a solution to a problem with evidence
  • Logical reasoning
  • Self-assessment of solutions
  • Observation
  • Pattern recognition

“The STEM disciplines are important for all students. They teach logical thinking as well as practical skills. Yet, too often, girls buy into the societal pressure that these subjects are not
for them.” The National Coalition of Girls’ Schools

Dr. Neda Blackburn

Dr. Neda Blackburn

The Holliday Heine STEM Institute Director / US Computer Science