Several Rome teachers are hoping that donors will help provide needed materials to help their students learn about engineering and technology.

Students across Central New York will be headed back to school in a few short weeks, and their teachers will welcome them back, eager to teach new facts and skills, including hands-on STEM and STEAM skills.

STEAM stands for Science,Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math, and represents an effort to develop today's students into adults ready to tackle the challenges of the 21st century. In order to enhance the students learning of these skills, teacher often require supplies that fall outside their classroom budget - many teachers will dig into their own pockets for supplies - but that can get very expensive.

That's where DonorsChoose.org comes in - it gives these teachers a platform to explain what they're looking for and, in some cases, pairs them with a foundation that will match any donations received.

Mrs. Darcangelo teaches at John Joy Elementary and she's hoping to raise $499 to bring STEM to her classroom. In her words: "STEM-based activities, guide students to work with their peers while learning a new task related to the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. In this project, I am requesting a number of items that are specifically for building (blocks, Lego's, K'NEX, snowflake shapes) as well as a number of materials that require students to use their creative minds (straws, string, craft sticks, velcro)." Donations to Mrs. Darcangelo are being matched 100%. You can contribute here.

Mrs. McVay teaches at Denti Elementary. She's hoping to raise $377 to buy STEM Tubs. According to Mrs. McVay: "research shows that when children are given time to engage in Inquiry and Play-Based Learning "it can provide a strong basis for later success at school." It also gives them time to develop social and cooperative learning skills by working with their peers. I want my students to be excited about coming to school! I know I would want to come to school if a STEM Tub, I can create buildings, dragons, and bridges with were​ waiting for me, instead of a morning worksheet! I will rotate the STEM tubs throughout the year so that all of the students get a hands-on experience with the different building materials to foster their love of Math and Science!" All donations to Mrs. McVay are also being matched 100%. You can help her and donate here.

These are just two examples of Rome teachers looking to help out their students - there are several more from Rome, and throughout Central New York. DonorsChoose.org has projects from teachers in every community - you simply search by geographic area and narrow your search by interest and you'll find plenty of chances to support teachers and students in your neighborhood.