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2020 STEM Expo

About the STEM Expo

This year’s STEM Expo event will be held on Saturday, February 29, 2020.

The STEM Expo is an annual school-wide event started in 2013 which showcases individual and group projects focused on various STEM topics. Students are asked to address real world problems using the engineering design cycle or the scientific investigative process. Teams will present their projects to local STEM experts and will demonstrate how their research has authentic applications and connections related to solving larger community issues or needs. The STEM Expo allows students to flex their creativity in solving and presenting challenges and issues that are relevant to them. Students learn about trial and error and the art of learning from one’s mistakes in order to redesign and reflect to improve something for the next time. At the same time, the event allows family, community members, and industry professionals a close view of the amazing things our students are capable of!

This year, the STEM Expo is sponsored exclusively by Google and will feature approximately 200 student projects by close to 650 middle and high school students, all of whom showcase their research and data to industry experts and professional volunteers. In order to ensure that each and every student feels supported, we count on our volunteer judges to contribute valuable feedback to students that help them further understand and learn from their work.  As a professional in the field, you can celebrate learning with our community and help judge and determine the top projects in our school!

View the full day’s schedule or sign up to be a volunteer!

The Road to STEM Expo

To prepare our TAF@Saghalie students for the STEM Expo, teachers follow a set of scientific practices that help students determine what STEM fields or areas of study interest them most, what driving question they want to answer and how to answer that question. Students then use what they learned to present their findings at our culminating STEM Expo.

Industry Day and Topic Generation (December 11, 2019)

We kick off the 3 month STEM Expo project with Industry Day, where volunteers from various organizations interact with our students at TAF@Saghalie and discuss their STEM-related careers. Professionals share information about their careers, answer student questions, and facilitate problem ideation with a small group of students. Students use the ideas they gather from these conversations to solidify the community problem they hope to solve. Industry Day helps students more clearly envision their STEM Expo project so they can begin brainstorming a driving question that will guide the remainder of their project.

Conduct Research Graphic

Conduct Research (December 2019)

During this phase, students conduct preliminary research to see what solutions have already been tested and come up with their own viable solutions. By analyzing each solution for its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, students are able to come up with the most viable solution that will drive their project.

Design and Present Proposals Graphic

Design and Present Project Proposals (January 2020)

After determining one solution, students write their driving question and make a plan for organizing their project and collecting data. During this phase, students write their hypotheses, determine if their project is an engineering design project or a scientific investigation and design their project prototype or procedure. Students conclude this phase by presenting their project proposals to industry professionals and community members in order to receive feedback that will help them improve their project before the STEM Expo. Proposal presentations take place on Januaru 22 – sign up to volunteer and provide feedback to student groups!

Test Solutions Graphic

Test Solutions (January – February 2020)

Once students have carefully designed their project, they must design a detailed approach to collecting data. Students utilizing the engineering design process will continue developing and refining their prototypes and students designing an experiment will execute their procedure so that they can gather reliable and unbiased data.

Analyze and Synthesize Data Graphic

Synthesize and Analyze Data (February 2020)

After students have collected data about their prototype or experiment, they analyze their various data points to draw conclusions. Students determine if their hypotheses were correct and how they would add to or redesign their project in the future.

Present Findings Graphic

Present Findings (February 29, 2020)

Students present what they found either through a poster presentation (6th and 7th grade) or in a PowerPoint presentation (8th grade and high school) on the day of STEM Expo to a group of teachers and industry experts.

Sponsored by

Google Logo


Every year, we work hard to pull together our community of professionals to support our students and help make our STEM Expo events a success. We lean on you to help us support our students – many of which are experiencing the STEM Expo for the first time.

There are four main roles we are seeking volunteers for(all of which will take place at TAF@Saghalie – Federal Way, WA):

  • Industry Day* (Wednesday, December 11, 2019)
    Share your career path, offer industry insight and answer student questions about authentic issues within your line of work to help students solidify problems that they will seek solutions for within their STEM Expo projects.
  • Project Proposal Presentations (Wednesday, January 22, 2020)
    Provide feedback to students on their project proposals to help them fine-tune their project ideas before digging in and collecting their data.
  • After-school Support (January – February 2020)
    Offer project support on any Tuesday or Thursday to students who opt to stay after school to work on their STEM Expo projects.
  • STEM Expo Judge (February 29, 2020)
    Sign-up to judge students as they present the data, findings, and prototypes of their three-month-long STEM Expo project.

*Virtual option available.

For all inquiries related to the STEM Expo and STEM Expo volunteer opportunities, please contact Krista Fincke at kristaf@techaccess.org

Thank you so much for supporting TAF!

STEM Expo Events Schedule

Please note: all STEM Expo related events will take place on the TAF@Saghalie school campus located at:

33914 19th Ave SW
Federal Way, WA 98023

Industry Day (December 11, 2019)

Closed to the public. Industry professionals volunteers and school only.

7:30 am – 2 pm

Project Proposal Presentations (January 22, 2020)

Closed to the public. Industry professionals volunteers and school only.

8:00 am – 10 am

After-school Project Work Time (January - February, 2020)

Closed to the public. Industry professionals volunteers and school only.

Tuesdays and Thursdays, January – February 2020
2:00 – 4:00 pm

STEM Expo (February 29, 2020)

Project and Presentation Evaluation (Students and Judges Only)
11:45 am – 1:45 pm

Project and Presentation Viewing (Open to Public)
10:30 am – 12:00 pm

Awards Ceremony (Open to Public)
1:00 pm – 1:30 pm


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