November/December 2017 – Vol. 30 No. 2

Connect with CSTA at the NSTA Los Angeles Conference

Posted: Monday, March 13th, 2017

by Jessica Sawko

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It is not too late to register and join me at the NSTA Conference in Los Angeles! Over 10,000 science educators from across the country are expected to arrive in Los Angeles at the end of the month to participate in the largest science education conference in the United States. CSTA and many of our members will be in attendance. Members will be presenting workshops, professional learning institutes, featured presentations, and attending several of more than 1,000 events that will take place during the March 30-April 2, 2017 event.

On Wednesday, the pre-publication version of California’s Science Curriculum Framework was made available electronically. Are you ready? As the Executive Director of the California Science Teachers Association (CSTA), I spend a lot of time helping teachers answer questions like that. And I’m able to answer them best when I’m connected with teachers and we navigate the new opportunities together.

So I’m pleased to invite you to join me in Los Angeles later this month at the 2017 National Conference on Science Education, where there will be some amazing events for teachers nationwide (I’m personally looking forward to getting my book signed by Martian author Andy Weir!). But more importantly, there will be many sessions presented by your colleagues from California.

Below is a small sampling of professional learning opportunities California educators are spearheading. In addition to these, you’ll have a chance to take a deep dive into the Next Generation Science Standards with dozens of sessions, a share-a-thon, workshops, and more. See all the NGSS activities here.

In addition to offering member registration rates to all current CSTA members (be sure to put “CSTA” into the “affiliate type” box to get the appropriate rate if you are a CSTA member), NSTA has selected three well-regarded California science educators for leadership positions in the planning committee. CSTA members Tim Williamson (conference chair), Therese Shanahan (program coordinator), and Susan Gomez-Zwiep (local arrangements coordinator) have teamed up along with many other volunteers to bring to Los Angeles a high-quality, active, engaging, and dynamic conference that is sure to offer something for every science educator in California.

Amazing Keynote Presentations by Two Californians

Andy Weir, author of The Martian and resident of Mountain Valley, CA will deliver this year’s keynote address: The Martian: The Story Behind the Story on Thursday, March 30, 9:15 – 10:30 am.

Pasadena resident Bill Nye will present a special Planetary Society pre-conference Lecture on Wednesday, March 29, 6:00 – 8:00 pm.

Featured Presentations by California Science Educators

Kathy DiRanna, Statewide Director, K-12 Alliance @ WestEd and CSTA member will present on Thursday, March 30, 8:00 – 9:00 am

Laura Henriques, CSU Long Beach Professor of Science Education and CSTA Past President will present on Friday, March 31, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm

Jacqueline Barber of the Lawrence Hall of Science will present on Friday, March 31, 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm

Jose Rivas, Physics and Engineering Teacher in Inglewood will present as part of a panel on Friday, March 31, 2:00 – 3:00 pm

Lucy Jones of the USGS in Pasadena will present Friday, March 31, 2:00 – 3:00 pm

Michelle Center, Director of the Assessment Division, California Department of Education will present on Friday, March 31, 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm as a part of a panel on statewide summative assessments for NGSS

Professional Learning Institutes (Wednesday, March 29 – Ticketed Events) Presented by California Science Educators

PLI-2: Helping Students Make Sense of the World Using Next Generation Science and Engineering Practices, Presenter(s): Christina Schwarz (Michigan State University: East Lansing, MI), Cynthia Passmore (University of California, Davis: Davis, CA – CSTA member), Brian Reiser (Northwestern University: Evanston, IL)

PLI-7: Equity in Science Education, Presenter(s): Jerry Valadez (California State University, Fresno: Sanger, CA – CSTA member), Gary Nakagiri (Alameda County Office of Education: Hayward, CA – CSTA member)

Plus more than 100 hands-on workshops and short courses presented by California science educators as well as educators from across the country.

Won’t you please join us in Los Angeles? Click the “register now” button below to learn more about the conference. I’ll be there, and you can email me, or ask for me at the CSTA membership booth (booth #634). I’d love to meet you and hear about your challenges and successes as a California science teacher. Please introduce yourself and let me know how we can help!

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Written by Jessica Sawko

Jessica Sawko

Jessica Sawko is CSTA’s Executive Director.

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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

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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…

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