May/June 2017 – Vol. 29 No. 7

Closing Keynote Speaker: Josh Tickell

Posted: Monday, October 1st, 2012

The Closing Session and Keynote Address will take place on Sunday, October 21, 8:00 am – 9:15 am at the Marriott San Jose. The event is open to all conference registrants and is generously sponsored by Chevron. After the keynote address, State Superintendent Tom Torlakson will address the conference audience. CSTA hopes that you will join us for the event and the entire California Science Education Conference this October 19 – 21, 2012.

 

Josh Tickell is a thought leader at the intersection of new energy, new technology, new fuel and new urbanism. He serves as a worldwide, in demand, strategist for Fortune 500 Companies, billionaires, and industrialists. As an award winning producer/director his movie FUEL went viral, capturing the Sundance Film Festival’s prestigious Best Documentary Award and millions of viewers worldwide. The movie was screened in the White House and used as a template by the Obama Administration to roll out a $28 Billion dollar new energy campaign that transformed the global markets for algae, fuel and solar power.

Tickell’s motto is: “The History of the Future is Being Written Today.” He educates companies on what is coming next in solar, wind, fuel, batteries, urban design, transportation, and the broad megatrends that are shaping society.  Tickell has spoken to global audiences at companies such as Morgan Stanley Smith Barney and at institutions such as MIT. He can show any industry, group, or company how to save money within that industry and also how to take advantage of new emerging technologies to create wealth and profits, transforming your company into a “planet-conscious” enterprise. Tickell’s insights are practical, no-nonsense good business.

Tickell understands how brands, companies, and technologies are changing the planet.

He consults on issues ranging from new technology product launches, to consumer attitudes, legislative strategies, operations-wide waste to energy and new technology installations for companies such as Green Mountain Energy Resources, Clif Bar, Yum Brands, Audi, General Motors and William Morris Endeavor.

Tickell has been a featured guest on Jay Leno’s The Tonight Show and Good Morning America. He is a regularly featured opinion leader in news stories on CNN, Discovery, Reuters, NBC, Fox and NPR. Articles on Tickell, his films, and his work have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, USA Today, The Huffington Post, Maxim Magazine, Popular Mechanics and thousands of international newspapers and magazines.

Josh Tickell’s life story is a miraculous David versus Goliath tale. He grew up in an area of Louisiana, called “Cancer Alley,” home to some 150 petrochemical facilities which process 60% of America’s gasoline. The area has cancer rates that are up to 1,000 times the national average. Tickell watched members of his family suffer with severe pollution related illnesses including cancers, lupus and auto immune diseases. He rose from these adverse circumstances to become a world leader in renewable energy, raising billions of dollars for new technology companies, altering international policies and forever changing the energy future of humanity for the better. Tickell is an active change agent in his home state. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Tickell lead a disaster relief project for which his nonprofit organization was selected by President William J. Clinton as part of the Inaugural Clinton Global Initiative on Climate Change. He recently directed a new documentary, ‘The Big Fix,’ about the BP oil spill in Louisiana which premiered at the Festival De Cannes and is being released by Lionsgate.

Josh has another film with a very positive, optimistic view about the future of energy and fuel coming out in 2013, which will be a major theatrical release with a huge advertising budget from a major studio, as well as major distribution across the US and Internationally.

 

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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Participate in Chemistry Education Research Study, Earn $500-800 Dollars!

Posted: Tuesday, May 9th, 2017

WestEd, a non-profit educational research agency, has been funded by the US Department of Education to test a new molecular modeling kit, Happy Atoms. Happy Atoms is an interactive chemistry learning experience that consists of a set of physical atoms that connect magnetically to form molecules, and an app that uses image recognition to identify the molecules that you create with the set. WestEd is conducting a study around the effectiveness of using Happy Atoms in the classroom, and we are looking for high school chemistry teachers in California to participate.

As part of the study, teachers will be randomly assigned to either the treatment group (who uses Happy Atoms) or the control group (who uses Happy Atoms at a later date). Teachers in the treatment group will be asked to use the Happy Atoms set in their classrooms for 5 lessons over the course of the fall 2017 semester. Students will complete pre- and post-assessments and surveys around their chemistry content knowledge and beliefs about learning chemistry. WestEd will provide access to all teacher materials, teacher training, and student materials needed to participate.

Participating teachers will receive a stipend of $500-800. You can read more information about the study here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HappyAtoms

Please contact Rosanne Luu at rluu@wested.org or 650.381.6432 if you are interested in participating in this opportunity, or if you have any questions!

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.

2018 Science Instructional Materials Adoption Reviewer Application

Posted: Monday, May 8th, 2017

The California Department of Education and State Board of Education are now accepting applications for reviewers for the 2018 Science Instructional Materials Adoption. The application deadline is 3:00 pm, July 21, 2017. The application is comprehensive, so don’t wait until the last minute to apply.

On Tuesday, May 9, 2017, State Superintendent Tom Torlakson forwarded this recruitment letter to county and district superintendents and charter school administrators.

Review panel members will evaluate instructional materials for use in kindergarten through grade eight, inclusive, that are aligned with the California Next Generation Science Content Standards for California Public Schools (CA NGSS). 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.

Lessons Learned from the NGSS Early Implementer Districts

Posted: Monday, May 8th, 2017

On March 31, 2017, Achieve released two documents examining some lessons learned from the California K-8 Early Implementation Initiative. The initiative began in August 2014 and was developed by the K-12 Alliance at WestEd, with close collaborative input on its design and objectives from the State Board of Education, the California Department of Education, and Achieve.

Eight (8) traditional school districts and two (2) charter management organizations were selected to participate in the initiative, becoming the first districts in California to implement the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Those districts included Galt Joint Union Elementary, Kings Canyon Joint Unified, Lakeside Union, Oakland Unified, Palm Springs Unified, San Diego Unified, Tracy Joint Unified, Vista Unified, Aspire, and High Tech High.

To more closely examine some of the early successes and challenges experienced by the Early Implementer LEAs, Achieve interviewed nine of the ten participating districts and compiled that information into two resources, focusing primarily on professional learning and 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.

Using Online Simulations to Support the NGSS in Middle School Classrooms

Posted: Monday, May 8th, 2017

by Lesley Gates, Loren Nikkel, and Kambria Eastham

Middle school teachers in Kings Canyon Unified School District (KCUSD), a CA NGSS K-8 Early Implementation Initiative district, have been diligently working on transitioning to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) integrated model for middle school. This year, the teachers focused on building their own knowledge of the Science and Engineering Practices (SEPs). They have been gathering and sharing ideas at monthly collaborative meetings as to how to make sure their students are not just learning about science but that they are actually doing science in their classrooms. Students should be planning and carrying out investigations to gather data for analysis in order to construct explanations. This is best done through hands-on lab experiments. Experimental work is such an important part of the learning of science and education research shows that students learn better and retain more when they are active through inquiry, investigation, and application. A Framework for K-12 Science Education (2011) notes, “…learning about science and engineering involves integration of the knowledge of scientific explanations (i.e., content knowledge) and the practices needed to engage in scientific inquiry and engineering design. Thus the framework seeks to illustrate how knowledge and practice must be intertwined in designing learning experiences in K-12 Science Education” (pg. 11).

Many middle school teachers in KCUSD are facing challenges as they begin implementing these student-driven, inquiry-based NGSS science experiences in their classrooms. First, many of the middle school classrooms at our K-8 school sites are not designed as science labs. 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 NGSS 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.

Celestial Highlights: May – July 2017

Posted: Monday, May 8th, 2017

May Through July 2017 with Web Resources for the Solar Eclipse of August 21, 2017

by Robert C. Victor. Twilight sky maps by Robert D. Miller. Graphs of planet rising and setting times by Jeffrey L. Hunt.

In spring and summer 2017, Jupiter is the most prominent “star” in the evening sky, and Venus, even brighter, rules the morning. By mid-June, Saturn rises at a convenient evening hour, allowing both giant planets to be viewed well in early evening until Jupiter sinks low in late September. The Moon is always a crescent in its monthly encounters with Venus, but is full whenever it appears near Jupiter or Saturn in the eastern evening sky opposite the Sun. (In 2017, Full Moon is near Jupiter in April, Saturn in June.) At intervals of 27-28 days thereafter, the Moon appears at a progressively earlier phase at each pairing with the outer planet until its final conjunction, with Moon a thin crescent, low in the west at dusk. You’ll see many beautiful events by just following the Moon’s wanderings at dusk and dawn in the three months leading up to the solar eclipse. Learn More…

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Written by Robert Victor

Robert Victor

Robert C. Victor was Staff Astronomer at Abrams Planetarium, Michigan State University. He is now retired and enjoys providing skywatching opportunities for school children in and around Palm Springs, CA. Robert is a member of CSTA.