STEAM on a Budget

So you’ve caught the STEAM bug! You been seeing teachers talk about it on Twitter, pins on Pinterest, and it’s always been in the back of your mind. You want to start, but you’re fearful of the cost. Well no worries! I’m here to share quick and easy ideas to get STEAM started in your classroom.

STEAM isn’t only about the latest robot or expensive consumable products. You can make a lot of headway in your classroom by using both recyclables and cheap, consumables.


  • cardboard paper rolls

  • egg cartons

  • plastic tops

  • water bottles

  • ANY cardboard!

  • Hint: avoid glass and aluminum cans

  • construction paper

  • play-dough

  • skewers

  • twist-ties

  • feathers

  • toothpicks

  • balloons

  • masking tape

  • pom-poms

Consumable Products:

  • Dixie cups

  • straws

  • popsicle sticks

  • aluminum foil

  • pipe-cleaners

  • index cards

  • yarn

Ok, so you have a great list of materials, but you’re not sure what to do with them? That’s the best part - let your students showcase their creativity. Give them a challenge, a list of materials, and let them go! Don’t give them an example, don’t tell them what to do, but rather let them discuss as a team.

Here are three easy challenges to get your started:

  1. The three little pigs need your help! The big, bad wolf is on his way and they need a place to hide. Can you build them a house that he will not be able blow down?

  2. Kids in your neighborhood are getting together to have a balloon-tossing contest, but with a twist! You’ve been challenged to see who can toss a balloon the furthest without actually touching the balloon itself! Put your thinking caps on and build a tossing machine! (Hint - don’t tell them but a great starting point could be a catapult)

  3. Your school is hosting a carnival and your class is tasked with coming up with a bunch of mazes to challenge your family and friends. Remembering the concept of gravity, can you build a maze with at least 2 “fake” directions to be used at the carnival? You will use a marble to move through the maze.

Now don’t delay! Make yourself a goal - start with at least 1 STEAM challenge in your classroom each week. Let yourself and your students figure out the kinks to running projects in your classroom and adjust from there. Before you know it, you’ll be looking to seamlessly integrate STEAM projects into your everyday curriculum.


If you find yourself with money to spend on STEAM supplies and you’re not sure where to start, check out these blog posts to spark some ideas!

Krazy About Keva

Learning with LEGO