Building Citizen-Science Investigators with Youth Leaders

Are you looking for ways to add more inquiry-based learning and teen leadership to your STEM program?

BirdSleuth is looking for ten teams of NYS youth-adult partners who are interested in using citizen science to spark youth inquiry projects. Youth-adult teams will build STEM facilitation skills and plan, recruit, and lead youth participants through an inquiry-based learning project together. The adult partner would take BirdSleuth’s new interactive online professional development course, Integrating Inquiry for Educators: Building Student Science Practices. This course uses readings, videos, interactive quizzes, and discussions to guide educators through the best practices of engaging youth with citizen science and inquiry. Adult participants will be expected to share the most relevant materials and techniques with their youth partner. Teams would participate in an in-person training to complement the inquiry course and support program development. Teams would take this course in fall 2017 and use the skills learned in the course to plan and deliver their program in spring/summer 2018.

Our ideal candidate is a youth-adult team. Ideal teen leader should have an interest in science and the outdoors, building leadership skills, and organizing community projects. Ideal adult participants include 4-H educators and volunteers, Master Gardeners, and Horticulture Extension staff. Adult candidates should have interest in using citizen science or leading outdoor investigations, experience teaching youth via Extension and 4-H. Teams should have a strong interest in reaching out to K-12 youth in the coming year through citizen science and STEM investigations.

Projects would focus on the citizen-science project of your choice. This could be one of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology citizen-science projects or projects run by other organizations (check out SciStarter for some ideas:


  • October 13th, 2017: Applications due, apply here
  • October-December 2017:  Complete the Integrating Inquiry for Educators course (20-25 hours) and share relevant resources with youth partner
  • January 12th-13th 2018: Attend an in-person training at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology with your youth partner to deepen course learning and discuss project implementation.
  • February-August 2018: Engage youth in citizen-science-inspired inquiry (number of youth, citizen science project, and inquiry project parameters determined by the youth-adult team)
  • August 2018: Showcase efforts at NYS Fair
  • September-October 2018:  Complete a final written assessment, follow-up interview, and post survey.


Benefits and Compensation

  • Access to Integrating Inquiry online course and printed course materials, including Investigating Evidence curriculum ($79 value)
  • $1,250 to the Association per team to cover travel and lodging for trainings, staff time for course work, and supplies for project implementation


Applications close on October 13, 2017, apply here. Feel free to contact BirdSleuth at with any questions.

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