September/October 2017 – Vol. 30 No. 1

Clean Tech Competition Announces 2011-2012 Finalists and Grand Prize Winning Teams

Posted: Sunday, April 1st, 2012

ARLINGTON, Va., Mar 20, 2012 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Applied Materials, Inc., in collaboration with the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), today announced the grand prize winning teams and finalists in the first-ever Clean Tech Competition student challenge, presented by Applied Materials. The competition, a collaborative student design contest developed to inspire the next generation of leaders and innovators in the field of clean technology, immerses high school students in real-world challenges that illustrate the powerful potential of clean technology to address problems that confront humanity.

“The Clean Tech Competition provides students with the opportunity to understand and appreciate the collaborative nature of today’s innovation process, while illustrating the global need for clean tech solutions,” said Om Nalamasu, chief technology officer of Applied Materials and corporate champion of the Clean Tech Competition. “The Competition aligns with Applied’s dedication to technological innovation and scaling clean tech solutions to complex problems, while demonstrating Applied’s commitment to making a positive contribution in the communities where our employees work and live.”

The competition involved students, ages 13-18, from two global centers of innovation, the San Francisco Bay Area in California, and Xi’an, China. This year’s challenge posed to students was “Solar Solutions to the Rescue.” Teams of students, under the guidance of their teacher or other adult team leader, designed a solar-powered solution to a basic human need identified in the aftermath of a natural disaster. Participants identified a situation, explored the issue and then presented their clean tech solution to a panel of industry and education experts for judging. One grand prize winning team, two second place teams, three third place teams and four finalists were then selected from each region.

“The Clean Tech Competition not only encourages students to be both creative and scientific, but also requires them to think critically while developing innovative sustainable solutions to some of the world’s most challenging issues,” said Dr. Francis Eberle, Executive Director of NSTA. “We congratulate the winners and finalists and commend all of the teachers, team leaders and mentors for engaging and empowering their students to make a real difference in the world around them.”

Project entries submitted by student teams ranged from a tracking system to locate victims swept away by a tsunami or flood to a light-weight, chemically-active filtration mask that utilizes solar and battery power to reduce the risk of developing respiratory problems from overexposure to volcanic ash. Other projects included a solar-powered reverse osmosis water supply system and an emergency communication station that can direct search and rescue teams to a trapped person’s precise location after an earthquake.

The grand prize winning team in each region won $6,000 in cash prizes for their enrichment and education. Second place teams won $3,000, third place teams won $1,000 and the four finalist teams from each region won $500. All 20 team leaders received a $500 cash prize.

The 10 San Francisco/Bay Area, California Finalists are:
Finalist – Jonathon Russo and Matthew Malone
Coach: Allister Chang
Willow Glen High School, San Jose, Calif.
Project: L.A.T.S. (Location Awareness & Tracking System)

Finalist – Lillian Chu, Marian Chu and Joshua Tsuei
Coach: Lisa Cochrum
Mentor: Ken Chu
Saratoga High School, Saratoga, Calif.
Project: How to Keep Food Fresh After an Earthquake

Finalist – Kadhir Manickam and Christopher Oh
Coach: Renee Fallon
Mentor: Suketo Parikh
Monta Vista High School, Cupertino, Calif.
Project: The Facio

Finalist – Ray Chen, Catherine Nguyen and Margaret Qian
Coach: Bakari Holmes
Mentor: Hemant Mungekar
Gunn High School, Palo Alto, Calif.
Project: Earthquake Emergency Communication System (EECS)

Finalist – Linxuan Fang, Samir Ghosh and Jaxon Welsh
Coach: Bakari Holmes
Mentor: Darshini Desai
Gunn High School, Palo Alto, Calif.
Project: Project Sizzle

Finalist – Eric Linxie, Anthony Lim, Kenny Wibowo and Eric Lee
Coach: Robert Jackson
Mentor: Daniel Handjojo
Dougherty Valley High School, San Ramon Calif.
Project: Solar Cube Battery

Finalist – Maya Sathaye, Shelby Rorabaugh and Lorraine Wong
Coach: Smriti Koodanjeri
Mentor: Martin Gothberg
The Harker School, San Jose Calif.
Project: A Solar Alternative to Charge Electric Wheelchairs

Finalist – Mary Gong and Surabhi Madhvapathy
Coach: Ram Narayanan
Mentor: Michael Stewart
Leland High School, San Jose, Calif.
Project: Solar Mask

Finalist – Yuzhang Chen and Aditya Gande
Coach: Daniel Stavis
Mentor: Sushil Padiyar
Cupertino High School, Cupertino, Calif.
Project: FRED (Flood Relief Emergency Device)

Finalist – John Zhao, Melody Hsu and Jun Chang
Coach: Daniel Stavis
Mentor: Robert Visser
Cupertino High School, Cupertino, Calif.
Project: H2Oasis

The 10 Xi’an, China Finalists are:
Finalist – Liu Shuaiqi, Bai Tianyang, Chen Shiyin, Zhang Xiyao
Team Leader: Gong Shaohua
School: Xi’an Tie Yi High School
Project: Solar-Powered Airship Emergency Rescue and Disaster Relief Schemes

Finalist – Lu Qiangsheng, Zhang Yaodong, Wang Zhizheng, Chen Qingyuan
Team Leader: Liu Quanming
School: The High School Affiliated to Xian Jiaotong University
Project: Multifunctional Flood Mitigation System

Finalist – Wang Huicheng, Lv Wentao, Li Zhuoyan, Wang Guowei
Team Leader: Qiang Zhike
School: Xi’an Tie Yi Middle School
Project: Parasol-Shaped Portable Solar Emergency Distiller

Finalist – Liu Yifeng, Yang Fan
Team Leader: Liu Quanming
School: The High School Affiliated to Xian Jiaotong University
Project: Solar Energy System of Prefabricated House

Finalist – Jia Bingxin, Yang Peilin, Liu Yundong, Jiang Shenghui
Team Leader: Gao Yuan
School: Middle School Affiliated to Northwest University
Project: Solar energy applications for earthquake relief

Finalist – Guo Yushuai, Zhang Tongrui, Guo Rongxin
Team Leader: Gao Yuan
School: Middle School Affiliated to Northwest University
Project: The Scheme for Solar Mobile Phone Relief

Finalist – Dang Shuxuan, Zhang Zhong, Li Wei
Team Leader: Cai Min
School: Xi’an Tie Yi Middle School
Project: Portable Machine Providing Emergency Food By Algae

Finalist – Wang Shiqi, Wang Yutian, Zhao Runhan
Team Leader: Cai Min
School: Xi’an Tie Yi Middle School
Project: Medical solar portable x-ray viewer used after earthquakes

Finalist – Zhao Pu, Zhang Jiameng, Zhang Mengdi
Team Leader: Han Lei
School: Xi’an Tie Yi Middle School
Project: Dual phase Waste Water Purifier

Finalist – Cheng Yuhan, Guo Zhaoqi, Yang Yihao
Team Leader: Dang Yali
School: Xi’an Gao Xin No.1 High School
Project: A Brief Script of the Solar Amphibious Tent

For more information about the Clean Tech Competition, visit .

About Applied Materials

Applied Materials, Inc. AMAT +0.16% is the global leader in providing innovative equipment, services and software to enable the manufacture of advanced semiconductor, flat panel display and solar photovoltaic products. Our technologies help make innovations like smartphones, flat screen TVs and solar panels more affordable and accessible to consumers and businesses around the world. At Applied Materials, we turn today’s innovations into the industries of tomorrow. Learn more at

About NSTA

The Arlington, VA-based National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) is the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all. NSTA’s current membership includes approximately 60,000 science teachers, science supervisors, administrators, scientists, business and industry representatives, and others involved in science education.

SOURCE: National Science Teachers Association and Applied Materials, Inc.

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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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.

State Schools Chief Tom Torlakson Announces 2017 Finalists for Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching

Posted: Wednesday, September 20th, 2017

SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson today nominated eight exceptional secondary mathematics and science teachers as California finalists for the 2017 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST).

“These teachers are dedicated and accomplished individuals whose innovative teaching styles prepare our students for 21st century careers and college and develop them into the designers and inventors of the future,” Torlakson said. “They rank among the finest in their profession and also serve as wonderful mentors and role models.”

The California Department of Education (CDE) partners annually with the California Science Teachers Association and the California Mathematics Council to recruit and select nominees for the PAEMST program—the highest recognition in the nation for a mathematics or science teacher. The Science Finalists will be recognized at the CSTA Awards Luncheon on Saturday, October 14, 2017. 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.

Thriving in a Time of Change

Posted: Wednesday, September 13th, 2017

by Jill Grace

By the time this message is posted online, most schools across California will have been in session for at least a month (if not longer, and hat tip to that bunch!). Long enough to get a good sense of who the kids in your classroom are and to get into that groove and momentum of the daily flow of teaching. It’s also very likely that for many of you who weren’t a part of a large grant initiative or in a district that set wheels in motion sooner, this is the first year you will really try to shift instruction to align to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). I’m not going to lie to you, it’s a challenging year – change is hard. Change is even harder when there’s not a playbook to go by.  But as someone who has had the very great privilege of walking alongside teachers going through that change for the past two years and being able to glimpse at what this looks like for different demographics across that state, there are three things I hope you will hold on to. These are things I have come to learn will overshadow the challenge: a growth mindset will get you far, one is a very powerful number, and it’s about the kids. 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.

If You Are Not Teaching Science Then You Are Not Teaching Common Core

Posted: Thursday, August 31st, 2017

by Peter A’Hearn 

“Science and Social Studies can be taught for the last half hour of the day on Fridays”

– Elementary school principal

Anyone concerned with the teaching of science in elementary school is keenly aware of the problem of time. Kids need to learn to read, and learning to read takes time, nobody disputes that. So Common Core ELA can seem like the enemy of science. This was a big concern to me as I started looking at the curriculum that my district had adopted for Common Core ELA. I’ve been through those years where teachers are learning a new curriculum, and know first-hand how a new curriculum can become the focus of attention- sucking all the air out of the room. Learn More…

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Written by Peter AHearn

Peter AHearn

Peter A’Hearn is the Region 4 Director for CSTA.

Tools for Creating NGSS Standards Based Lessons

Posted: Tuesday, August 29th, 2017

by Elizabeth Cooke

Think back on your own experiences with learning science in school. Were you required to memorize disjointed facts without understanding the concepts?

Science Education Background

In the past, science education focused on rote memorization and learning disjointed ideas. Elementary and secondary students in today’s science classes are fortunate now that science instruction has shifted from students demonstrating what they know to students demonstrating how they are able to apply their knowledge. Science education that reflects the Next Generation Science Standards challenges students to conduct investigations. As students explore phenomena and discrepant events they engage in academic discourse guided by focus questions from their teachers or student generated questions of that arise from analyzing data and creating and revising models that explain natural phenomena. Learn More…

Written by Elizabeth Cooke

Elizabeth Cooke

Elizabeth Cooke teaches TK-5 science at Markham Elementary in the Oakland Unified School District, is an NGSS Early Implementer, and is CSTA’s Secretary.