6-12 Grade Units

The Kansas Corn STEM program creates and provides science lessons and labs for middle and high school science educators. We are investing in the future by providing lab units, lab supplies and professional development to Kansas science teachers. As the need to produce more food with less resources continues, it is important that future generations have a better understanding of the agriculture industry and its career opportunities. That’s why the Kansas Corn STEM program focuses on high school and middle school units to teach science through the lens of corn. These units meet Next Generation Science Stands and bring a greater awareness of the connection between science and agriculture.

About the Kansas Corn STEM and Seed to STEM Programs

Kansas Corn STEM is the name of the Kansas Corn Commission’s nationally-recognized education program that provides STEM lessons, labs, materials and professional development for Kansas K-12 teachers. Kansas Corn STEM includes the Seed to STEM middle and high school science workshops as well as inquiry-based summer workshops for elementary teachers at K-State. The Kansas Corn Commission began the original Seed to STEM high school program in 2016, contracting with Education Projects and Partnerships LLC (EPP) in collaboration with Ohio Corn. In 2017, Kansas Corn created an in-house education staff, led by Kansas Corn Director of Education Sharon Thielen, PhD, building a comprehensive K-12 STEM program. Nine of the original high school labs developed with EPP and Ohio Corn have been updated to meet Kansas standards and are still in use. The balance of our 45 K-12 lessons and labs have been created by Kansas educators. All lessons, labs, printed materials and online assets are the copyrighted property of the Kansas Corn Commission. Educators may use and copy these materials for classroom use. The use of any of our printed or online materials for promotional or commercial use is prohibited without the permission of Kansas Corn.

Middle School Units

The middle school units, cover topics such as ethanol, precision agriculture and genetically modified crops all while meeting Next Generation Science Standards.


Explore Corn

The explore corn unit contains four lessons that focus on how corn grows.


The soil unit has two lessons that focus on soils and how it plays a vital part in growing corn.


The water unit has two lessons that focus on water quantity and quality.

High School Units

The high school units cover a variety of topics that become hands-on activities students can engage in.  These units meet Next Generation Science Standards.

Explore Corn

The Explore Corn unit has three lessons that focus on the resources and conditions needed for a plant to grow.

Ethanol Fuel

The Fuel unit contains four lessons that focus on ethanol and how it is used as an energy source.

Soil and Water

The soils unit contains one lesson that focuses on the importance of soil in corn production.

The water unit contains two lessons that focus on the importance of water quantity and quality.

Make Learning Fun

Investing in teachers is a priority for the Kansas Corn Commission. We are committed to providing materials and training to help teachers excel in the classroom.  Teachers who use the Seed to STEM labs in the classroom can request supplies.  Corn seed, corn mash and funding for ethanol plant tours are among the resources you can request.  Teachers who seek to expand their knowledge and skill of teaching are encouraged to seek out a training opportunity.

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