Why did we create a STEM club for autistic young people and their families?
What is STEM Club? And how can we help autistic people?
STEM is short for science, technology, engineering and math. A club that incorporates all these things means that you get the flexibility to cover different topics in a fun and engaging way. We haven’t structured our content around what is in the curriculum. Students should feel that they are part of a learning process outside school. Because of this, the creation of how I learn folders will be developed with each student. This way we can factor in, sensory, processing and stimming needs. This folder then goes with the student for them to use beyond the STEM club. We are keen students can stim and sensory regulate as they need to. We are equally passionate that any student, child, young person, adult, astronaut is able to become their own best advocate on what it really means to be autistic for them.
Who are we?
Aimee at AMALAwellness
Aimee is a qualified and experienced Science teacher, qualifying with a BSc Hons in Applied Chemistry in 2009 and a PGCE in Secondary Science. Specializing in Chemistry in 2011. Although now she runs a Community Interest Company and teaches Yoga, Meditation and Chair Yoga and Exercise, her interest in Science and Chemistry has always stayed at the forefront of her passions. Aimee loves learning, teaching science and often includes scientific theory in her Yoga and Meditation teachings, especially about the nervous system and anatomy.
Aimee has 5 years experience teaching primary and secondary school Science and English in the UK and Thailand. Additionally she has 3 years experience teaching Yoga, Meditation and Chair Yoga and Exercise. Aimee is excited to plan and deliver sessions for Eric Knows CIC.
Andrea at LifeThyme
Andrea is a registered scientist specialising in food and nutritional science. She has worked in food related public health roles for many years prior to her current role as an academic, researching food systems and their impact on different communities. Andrea has been at the centre of local food projects and interventions for many years and was the driving force and mastermind behind the Ecoshop model, which is so popular in the Teesside area. In addition to this, she is an accomplished and published scientific researcher with an adult ADHD diagnosis. This has prompted an interest in exploring neurodivergency and science, particularly barriers to food for neurodivergent people.
Andrea is passionate that the neurodivergent communities needs are met in the world of science, as she has seen first hand the important role “outside the box” thinking has on our scientific advancement and she hopes to inspire the next generation of great scientists to join this wonderfully diverse sector.
Ella at Eric Knows
Ella is an Occupational Therapist with over 20 years experience in assisting people overcome and adjust to life changing illnesses and injuries. She is autistic and has 3 incredible neurodivergent children. Ella is passionate about making the world a more accessible place. She firmly believes that the world needs to be generally more accessible to all. Especially those who have disabilities or those who are neurodivergent. In 2018 she founded Eric Knows. Since this time Eric, the little koala with a big attitude has gone from strength to strength. Ella is autistic with a paediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI). She is passionate that whoever you are, whatever your story is, you are given a chance to be really seen.
How is this funded?
This whole project has been funded by the Shackleton Foundation. Have a read about the truly incredible projects they fund on their webpage. Their focus is enabling not-for-profit organisations identifying ways of helping disadvantaged young people, and scoping a path forward to try to help. However this may be possible. That is why we were so fortunate and blessed to gain their backing, this is a new project, a Shackleton in its own right! We aim that with passion, hard work and incredible neurodivergent minds we can find ways of scaling up this programme to reach even more young people and their families. Year. After. Year.
Get in touch!
Tell us where you are (we won’t land unannounced for a cuppa….) but we would love to hear your story, what is missing in your area, what do you need? We aim to scale up, across the north east initially, then further afield.