January/February 2018 – Vol. 31 No. 2

A Rose is Born

Posted: Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

CSTA Science Education Conference 2011, Pasadena

Pasadena, the city of the famous Tournament of Roses parade, is soon to become the “City of Science.”  The 20th California Science Education Conference will be held in this beautiful Southern California city this fall.  The conference committee has been hard at work creating a program that will burst into bloom October 21-23, 2011.

You say it’s a bit early to be thinking about a conference that is nine months away?  It is actually a perfect time to begin thinking about this conference.  You may not know it, but your school district is starting to plan for the distribution of its Title II monies for the 2011-12 school years’ professional development activities.  Past Title II money distributions have typically gone to the so-called high-needs areas of math and reading/language arts.  It’s my guess that this is because many teachers are not aware that these monies can and should be divided equally between all of the content areas. 

Now is the time to talk to your principal and request access to these funds for

your professional development needs, including the CSTA yearly conference.  Administrators don’t know you want the money unless you ask for it!  If district release time and substitutes are a problem, the planners of this conference have utilized Saturday and Sunday as days packed with content, pedagogical offerings, and speakers.

2011 Conference LogoNow for the birth of our rose.  If you take a close look at the 2011 conference logo, you will see that it is a beautiful rose fashioned from the sleek bodies of various animals.  I’m going to use the rose as a theme for this column.  CSTA has theoretically developed a new hybrid rose for this exciting professional development opportunity in Pasadena.  We’ll call this new hybrid “The Rose of Science Education.”  This rose is unparalleled in its beauty and versatility.  It comes in a variety of colors and is strong and sturdy in its shape and stature.  This rose has a tenacity that will not allow others to destroy it.  It has the fragrance of dedication and knowledge, and its structure is based on the strength and the forcefulness of all of California’s science educators.

Let’s take this rose and dissect it into its parts as any good biologist would do.  The roots of this beauty are made from the backbone of your CSTA organizational administrators, the board of directors and the 2011 conference committee (under the capable guidance of co-chairs Laura Henriques and Dean Gilbert).  The combined forces of these groups give the rose sustenance and life-giving nourishment.  The stem is strengthened by the CSTA membership.  Its leaves are the energy-giving workshops, short courses, field courses, and speakers offered throughout the conference.  The buds of this rose are the novice and pre-service teachers who attend this yearly gathering, just waiting to blossom by using the content and pedagogical knowledge they receive at the conference in their classrooms.  And finally, the beautiful full blossoms depict the knowledge and self-confidence of all science educators, so necessary to instilling in our students a deep appreciation and understanding of science.

As stated above this newly developed rose comes in a variety of colors.  Each color standing for various aspects of the Pasadena conference.  The white rose signifies the purity of teaching true, inquiry-based science.  The purple rose stands for the royal treatment you will receive while attending the conference.  Another of these American beauties comes in red, signifying the red carpet that will be rolled out for you in Pasadena.  The shimmering blue rose depicts the bright blue skies you will encounter in Southern California, and the yellow rose illustrates the bright sunshine in the city of roses.

As we all know “a rose is a rose is a rose” and that “a rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” but this newly-developed “Rose of Science Education” is a must-have for all of California’s science educators.  Please share the existence of this new hybrid with all of your science colleagues, novice and veteran alike, as this rose is sure to win first place in any professional development contest!  Plant this rose in your own science education garden and it will bring you joy and happiness for years to come.

Written by Tim Williamson

Tim Williamson is a science methods instructor at CSU Long Beach and is a member and past-president of CSTA.

One Response

  1. Superbly written piece! I’m talking to my Principal tomorrow!

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Accelerating into NGSS – A Statewide Rollout Series Now Accepting Registrations

Posted: Friday, January 19th, 2018

Are you feeling behind on the implementation of NGSS? Then Accelerating into NGSS – the Statewide Rollout event – is right for you!

WHO SHOULD ATTEND
If you have not experienced Phases 1-4 of the Statewide Rollout, or are feeling behind with the implementation of NGSS, the Accelerating Into NGSS Statewide Rollout will provide you with the greatest hits from Phases 1-4!

OVERVIEW
Accelerating Into NGSS Statewide Rollout is a two-day training geared toward grade K-12 academic coaches, administrators, curriculum leads, and teacher leaders. Check-in for the two-day rollout begins at 7:30 a.m., followed by a continental breakfast. Sessions run from 8:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. on Day One and from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Day Two.

Cost of training is $250 per attendee. Fee includes all materials, continental breakfast, and lunch on both days. It is recommended that districts send teams of four to six, which include at least one administrator. Payment can be made by check or credit card. If paying by check, registration is NOT complete until payment has been received. All payments must be received prior to the Rollout location date you are attending. Paying by credit card secures your seat at time of registration. No purchase orders accepted. No participant cancellation refunds.

For questions or more information, please contact Amy Kennedy at akennedy@sjcoe.net or (209) 468-9027.

REGISTER

http://bit.ly/ACCELERATINGINTONGSS

DATES & LOCATIONS
MARCH 28-29, 2018
Host: San Mateo County Office of Education
Location: San Mateo County Office of Education, Redwood City

APRIL 10-11, 2018
Host: Orange County Office of Education
Location: Brandman University, Irvine

MAY 1-2, 2018
Host: Tulare County Office of Education
Location: Tulare County Office of Education, Visalia

MAY 3-4, 2018
Host: San Bernardino Superintendent of Schools
Location: West End Educational Service Center, Rancho Cucamonga

MAY 7-8, 2018
Host: Sacramento County Office of Education
Location: Sacramento County Office of Education Conference Center and David P. Meaney Education Center, Mather

JUNE 14-15, 2018
Host: Imperial County Office of Education
Location: Imperial Valley College, Imperial

Presented by the California Department of Education, California County Superintendents Educational Services Association/County Offices of Education, K-12 Alliance @WestEd, California Science Project, and the California Science Teachers Association.

Written by California Science Teachers Association

California Science Teachers Association

CSTA represents science educators statewide—in every science discipline at every grade level, Kindergarten through University.

The Teaching and Learning Collaborative, Reflections from an Administrator

Posted: Friday, January 19th, 2018

by Kelly Patchen

My name is Mrs. Kelly Patchen, and I am proud to be an elementary assistant principal working in the Tracy Unified School District (TUSD) at Louis Bohn and McKinley Elementary Schools. Each of the schools I support are Title I K-5 schools with about 450 students, a diverse student population, a high percentage of English Language Learners, and students living in poverty. We’re also lucky to be part of the CA NGSS K-8 Early Implementation Initiative with the K-12 Alliance. Learn More…

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Written by NGSS Early Implementer

NGSS Early Implementer

In 2015 CSTA began to publish a series of articles written by teachers participating in the California NGSS k-8 Early Implementation Initiative. This article was written by an educator(s) participating in the initiative. CSTA thanks them for their contributions and for sharing their experience with the science teaching community.

2018 CSTA Conference Call for Proposals

Posted: Wednesday, January 17th, 2018

CSTA is pleased to announce that we are now accepting proposals for 90-minute workshops and three- and six-hour short courses for the 2018 California Science Education Conference. Workshops and short courses make up the bulk of the content and professional learning opportunities available at the conference. In recognition of their contribution, members who present a workshop or short course receive 50% off of their registration fees. Click for more information regarding proposals, or submit one today by following the links below.

Short Course Proposal

Workshop Proposal Learn More…

Written by California Science Teachers Association

California Science Teachers Association

CSTA represents science educators statewide—in every science discipline at every grade level, Kindergarten through University.

CSTA’s New Administrator Facebook Group Page

Posted: Monday, January 15th, 2018

by Holly Steele

The California Science Teachers Association’s mission is to promote high-quality science education, and one of the best practice’s we use to fulfill that mission is through the use of our Facebook group pages. CSTA hosts several closed and moderated Facebook group pages for specific grade levels, (Elementary, Middle, and High School), pages for district coaches and science education faculty, and the official CSTA Facebook page. These pages serve as an online resource for teachers and coaches to exchange teaching methods, materials, staying update on science events in California and asking questions. CSTA is happy to announce the creation of a 6th group page called, California Administrators Supporting Science. Learn More…

Written by Guest Contributor

From time to time CSTA receives contributions from guest contributors. The opinions and views expressed by these contributors are not necessarily those of CSTA. By publishing these articles CSTA does not make any endorsements or statements of support of the author or their contribution, either explicit or implicit. All links to outside sources are subject to CSTA’s Disclaimer Policy: http://www.classroomscience.org/disclaimer.

Find Your Reason to Engage

Posted: Monday, January 15th, 2018

by Jill Grace

I was recently reflecting on events in the news and remembered that several years ago, National Public Radio had a story about a man named Stéphane Hessel, a World War II French resistance fighter, Nazi concentration camp survivor, and contributor to the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The story focused on a book he had published, Time for Outrage (2010).

In it, Hessel makes the argument that the worst attitude is indifference:

“Who is in charge; who are the decision makers? It’s not always easy to discern. We’re not dealing with a small elite anymore, whose actions we can clearly identify. We are dealing with a vast, interdependent world that is interconnected in unprecedented ways. But there are unbearable things all around us. You have to look for them; search carefully. Open your eyes and you will see. This is what I tell young people: If you spend a little time searching, you will find your reasons to engage. The worst attitude is indifference. ‘There’s nothing I can do; I get by’ – adopting this mindset will deprive you of one of the fundamental qualities of being human: outrage.  Our capacity for protest is indispensable, as is our freedom to engage.”

His words make me take pause when I think of the status of science in the United States. A general “mistrust” of science is increasingly pervasive, as outlined in a New Yorker article from the summer of 2016. Learn More…

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Written by Jill Grace

Jill Grace

Jill Grace is a Regional Director for the K-12 Alliance and is President of CSTA.