STEAM-ED: full-steam ahead on a mission for free science education


STEAM-ED, formerly the education classroom sessions of House of Science Tauranga, provides STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, with some Art for good measure) based after-school and homeschool classes, as well as holiday programmes.

Until now STEAM-ED have only been able to reach children whose parents can afford the fees. But now, they are on a mission to change that!

This year STEAM-ED has introduced in-school classes in which they will be visiting low decile schools to deliver high quality robotics or science lessons. These in school classes will be held once a week for a selected school term free of charge thanks to support received from Bay Trust. STEAM-ED will be leading the charge with classes at Merivale School, starting Monday 14th February.

“In January, we were fortunate to secure sponsorship from University of Waikato, Robotics Plus and Page Macrae Engineering that enabled us to buy the new equipment we needed to go into the schools. Now all we need is to secure further financial support to cover our educators’ wages, so we can expand this service to other local schools.

We have found that many of the children that are attracted to and keep coming back to our classes are on the ADHD/Autism spectrum, and they thrive in the environment where they are amongst similar minded children.  We help them develop the social skills that may disadvantage them in their day-to-day life.  By going into schools, we hope to target more of these children who perhaps aren’t thriving in the traditional school classroom.”

STEAM-ED General Manager, Toni de Rijk

At each of the in-school sessions one or two teachers are required to be in attendance as a way of providing professional development, with the intention of continue to support the teachers if they wish to expand their robotics or science opportunities for students in the future.  STEAM-ED has proven their competence and ability to provide high quality lessons with both STEAM-ED’s junior and senior robotics club teams winning national awards within the last 12 months.

“We see this as an investment in the future of many children’s lives, it is also an investment the requires financial support from a caring local business to continue and expand this initiative to more schools in the region” says Toni. If you would like to be a part of this exciting programme, please contact STEAM-ED’s new General Manager, Toni de Rijk, at to discuss options and how your support can be acknowledged.