XTech: A Collaboration of the Exploratorium and the San Francisco Beacon Initiative

September 1st, 2005 - September 30th, 2010 | PROJECT

The X-Tech program will bring together the Exploratorium and staff at five Beacon Centers to create an innovative technology program using STEM and IT activities previously tested at the Exploratorium. At each X-Tech Club, two Beacon Center staff and two Exploratorium Youth Facilitators will work with 20 middle school students each year for a total of 300 participants. Youth Facilitators are alumni of the Exploratorium's successful Explainer program and will receive 120 hours of training in preparation for peer mentoring. Each site will use the X-Tech hands-on curriculum that will focus on small technological devices to explore natural phenomenon, in addition to digital imaging, visual perception and the physiology of eyes. Parental involvement will be fostered through opportunities to participate in lectures, field trips and open houses, while staff at Beacon Centers will participate in 20 hours of professional development each year.

Project Website(s)


Website Archive

Project Products

The Exploratorium's XTECH Program: Engaging STEM Experiences for Middle-School Youth - Summative Evaluation Report

Team Members

Vivian Altmann, Principal Investigator, Exploratorium
Darlene Librero, Former Co-Principal Investigator, Exploratorium
Virginia Witt, Former Co-Principal Investigator, San Francisco Beacon Initiative
Michael Funk, Former Co-Principal Investigator, Sunset Neighborhood Beacon Center


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ITEST
Award Number: 0525217
Funding Amount: 899875


Audience: Educators | Teachers | Middle School Children (11-13) | Museum | ISE Professionals | Parents | Caregivers
Discipline: Computing and information science | Engineering | Life science | Social science and psychology | Technology
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Afterschool Programs | Community Outreach Programs | Museum and Science Center Programs | Professional Development | Conferences | Networks | Professional Development and Workshops | Public Programs