November/December 2017 – Vol. 30 No. 2

Achieve Announces Launch of EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science – Apply Today!

Posted: Saturday, September 10th, 2016

Achieve is excited to announce the creation of the EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science.

The goal of the EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science will be to identify high-quality lessons and units that are designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Building on the work of the EQuIP peer review panels for mathematics and English Language Arts, the science peer reviewers will evaluate lessons and units in their area of expertise and, collectively, will cover grades K-12. Any lessons and units that are determined to be of high quality will be publicly shared via www.nextgenscience.org so that educators and curriculum developers across all states and districts can benefit from these materials. 

APPLICATION PROCESS

  1. Interested persons must complete this online application. (Application period is Sept. 6 – Sept. 23, 2016)
  2. Applicants will receive an email containing two grade-banded science lessons to review and one copy of the new EQuIP Rubric for Science (Version 3) to use as they evaluate both science lessons.
  3. Applicants must submit their completed EQuIP rubric reviews for consideration. (Due no later than Sept. 23, 2016)
  4. Accepted applicants will be notified of their selection as a peer reviewer. (By Oct. 21, 2016)
  5. Selected peer reviewers must confirm their commitment and interest. (No later than Oct. 25, 2016)

SELECTION PROCESS

While all interested persons are encouraged to apply, the application process is designed to evaluate applicant’s ability to apply the EQuIP Rubric for Science (Version 3.0) and reveal their understanding of A Framework for K-12 Science Education and the NGSS. Applicants will be selected based on their ability to make consistent, criterion-based evaluations using the latest version of the EQuIP Rubric for Science.

Please note that the EQuIP Rubric for Lessons & Units: Science (Version 2.0) has been updated and looking ahead, selected peer reviewers will only use the new EQuIP Rubric (Version 3.0) to evaluate lessons for quality and alignment to the NGSSThe latest tool, Version 3.0, will be released to applicants (and available on www.nextgenscience.org).

THE COMMITMENT

The responsibilities of the peer reviewers will include:

  1. Convening in person at least once each calendar year, starting with a mandatory two-day Kickoff Meeting during November 15-16, 2016.
  2. Committing up to twelve days of service during the inaugural one-year term, through a combination of in-person and virtual meetings, as well as time spent independently reviewing collections.
  3. Completing a quality review process for a minimum of ten assigned reviews per year, including submitting written, criterion-based feedback in a timely manner.

While peer reviewers are committing to a one-year term, the work will be ongoing and there will be opportunities to extend their involvement. A full list of responsibilities will be provided to selected peer reviewers on October 21, 2016.

For answers to common questions, check out the FAQ: EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Achieve thanks Alcoa Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of New York, and Pisces Foundation for their generous support of EQuIP for Science and for working to ensure all students have access to a quality science education.

Please contact ngss@achieve.org for additional questions or comments.

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.

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Apply to Join Achieve’s Science Peer Review Panel

Posted: Friday, December 15th, 2017

Achieve is excited to announce the expansion of the Science Peer Review Panel!

Achieve’s Science Peer Review Panel (“Science PRP”) is an elite group of educators who work to evaluate and share high-quality lesson sequences and units that are designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Members of the Science PRP are part of the solution to a persistent problem in the science education field: not enough examples of high-quality instructional materials designed for the NGSS.

Join the Science PRP by filling out this online application and connect with a network of educators across the country committed to advancing science education for all students, develop your expertise in the NGSS, and work to make better science instructional materials more widely available to the science education field. This opportunity includes free, valuable professional learning experiences designed to deepen your understanding of the NGSS and the evaluation process for instructional materials. 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.

Priority Features of NGSS-Aligned Instructional Materials

Posted: Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

Recommendations for Publishers, Reviewers, and Educators. The California Science Teachers Association and the science teachers associations of three other Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) west-coast states, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington, have co-authored a white paper on priority features of NGSS instructional materials. This is the first time our states have collaborated to convey a common vision on an issue of great importance for the implementation of the NGSS. We understand all too well that for meaningful shifts to happen and to support the full vision of the NGSS, strong K-12 Instructional materials are required. 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.

State Board Moves Forward Two Key Pieces Supporting CA NGSS Implementation

Posted: Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

by Jessica Sawko

CSTA President Jill Grace provides public comment at the November 8, 2017, California State Board of Education meeting.

On November 8, 2017, the California State Board of Education (SBE) took action on two items of import relating to the implementation of the California Next Generation Science Standards (CA NGSS). One item was relating to the California Science Test (CAST) and the other to instructional materials. CSTA provided both written and oral comments on both items along with providing input on what CSTA and many other advocates view as a critical component of our state’s emerging accountability system – student access to a broad course of study. 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.

NGSS – Early Attempts and Later Reflections from an Early Implementer Teacher

Posted: Thursday, November 23rd, 2017

by Christa Dunkel

  • There are so many acronyms! Where do I start?
  • What “baby step” should I take first? 
  • How can I make this happen in my elementary classroom?

All of these thoughts and more swam through my head over three years ago when I began my journey into NGSS. I was fresh from a week-long institute with the K-12 Alliance as part of the CA NGSS K-8 Early Implementation Initiative. Much of the week was spent on digging into the NGSS architecture – how the standards are set-up, how to read the standards, what each of the three dimensions meant. Now that I knew how to read them, I needed to figure out how to implement them into my classroom of 24 eight-year-olds. With some guidance from the K-12 Alliance leaders and my own district-level NGSS team, I began the process with some easy “baby steps.” 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.

CSTA Is Now Accepting Nominations for Board Members

Posted: Friday, November 17th, 2017

Current, incoming, and outgoing CSTA Board of Directors at June 3, 2017 meeting.

Updated 7:25 pm, Nov. 17, 2017

It’s that time of year when CSTA is looking for dedicated and qualified persons to fill the upcoming vacancies on its Board of Directors. This opportunity allows you to help shape the policy and determine the path that the Board will take in the new year. There are time and energy commitments, but that is far outweighed by the personal satisfaction of knowing that you are an integral part of an outstanding professional educational organization, dedicated to the support and guidance of California’s science teachers. You will also have the opportunity to help CSTA review and support legislation that benefits good science teaching and teachers.

Right now is an exciting time to be involved at the state level in the California Science Teachers Association. The CSTA Board of Directors is currently involved in implementing the Next Generations Science Standards and its strategic plan. If you are interested in serving on the CSTA Board of Directors, now is the time to submit your name for consideration. 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.