JDC_7153The Challenge provides opportunities for schools, educators, and grade 5-8 students to receive scholarships, national recognition, prizes, and more! There is no cost for a school to participate in the Challenge. Student participation in the Challenge begins with schools, where students take the Challenge Qualifier to identify who will move on to the Local Challenge competition.

Please see our Important Dates and Challenge Official Rules for more information about school and student eligibility and participation.

Challenge content aligns to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and includes science concepts covered in many state assessments, such as:

  • the scientific method
  • properties of matter
  • chemical formulas & equations
  • chemistry in the human body
  • and much more!

New to the Challenge?

Educators who are new to the Challenge should complete the Educator Inquiry Form and review the Challenge Official Rules. Please do not register for the Challenge if your school has never participated before and you have not been in contact with your Local Challenge Organizer. If you have any immediate questions about how to get involved please contact us at challenge@chemed.org.

Participating Educators & Schools

We know that educators are busy people, so we keep school participation requirements simple! Please review the information below and take the following steps as a participating school:

  • Refer to the Challenge Important Dates  for this year’s timeline.
  • Work with your Local Organizer to register your school.
    • CEF encourages all grade 5-8 students at your school—entire classes or grade levels—to participate!
    • Registration for the 2016-2017 Challenge will open mid-September.
  • Direct students to the free study materials. Educators are encouraged, but not required, to cover this material with students. Concepts may already be covered in current curriculum. For more help with Challenge preparation, see our Suggested Additional Resources page.
  • Your Local Challenge Organizer will provide you with dates & deadlines specific to your Challenge site. The Local Challenge Organizer will also provide more information regarding the Challenge Qualifier and the Local Challenge and/or State Challenge event.
    • The Challenge Qualifier is a multiple-choice test provided by CEF and administered by educators and/or Organizers to determine the students that will participate in Local Challenges. Educators and participating schools who have registered their school online will receive more information for accessing and administering the Qualifier from their Local Challenge Organizers. 
    • The number of students who will advance to each level of competition varies. This number is based on the student and school participation in a Local Challenge site or Challenge state. Your Local or State Challenge Organizer will be able to provide you with information regarding the number of students who will advance to each level of competition.
  • Get excited for another amazing Challenge and school year! Thank for you participating in the Challenge and we encourage you to take the time to check out the other You Be The Chemist® programs!

Additional Resources for Participating Schools/Educators:

CEF provides the following resources for participating schools and educators:

Curious what it’s like to be a Challenge participant?

Disclaimer: Please note that these sample questions are provided as a reference only and should not be altered or adjusted. These sample questions are not an indication of what will be seen in future Local, State, or National Challenge competitions, but are a small set of questions that have been previously used.

Please contact us at challenge@chemed.org if you would like a poster or other print materials for your classroom!