August 2015 – Vol. 27 No. 12

NGSS Middle School Science Standards Arrangement Meeting

Posted: Thursday, August 1st, 2013

When:
August 29, 2013 @ 12:00 am – 2:00 am
2013-08-29T00:00:00+00:00
2013-08-29T02:00:00+00:00
Where:
Mather Room, Sacramento County Office of Education
10474 Mather Boulevard
Mather, CA 95655
USA
Cost:
Free
Contact:
Connie Morrill
916-979-7004

CSTA and the Sacramento County Office of Education will hold an informational and discussion meeting on the middle school arrangement proposed. In attendance will be Rick Pomeroy of UC Davis School of Education (CSTA past president and SEP member), Glen Lusebrink (CSTA and SEP member) a teacher in the Woodland Joint Unified School District, Lisa Hegdahl, 8th grade science teacher at McCaffrey Middle School and CSTA president-elect, and Phil Romig, Science Curriculum Specialist for the Sacramento County Office of Education (CSTA member).

RSVP Required: Please click here to complete the RSVP form.

 

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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Where California K-12 Science Teachers Go for NGSS

Posted: Friday, August 14th, 2015

When:
August 29, 2013 @ 12:00 am – 2:00 am
2013-08-29T00:00:00+00:00
2013-08-29T02:00:00+00:00
Where:
Mather Room, Sacramento County Office of Education
10474 Mather Boulevard
Mather, CA 95655
USA
Cost:
Free
Contact:
Connie Morrill
916-979-7004

RegisterNowMedNow is the time to register for the 2015 California Science Education Conference presented by the California Science Teachers Association (CSTA).  Attending the CSTA 2015 conference is a great way to gain professional development, and network with other science teachers from across the state, and obtain new classroom ideas, in one place over three days!

The California Science Education Conference is your best source of information on implementing NGSS in your classroom.

The California Science Teachers Association hosts this conference to focus on what California science educators need to know to hone their craft, stay updated on standards, and apply best practices gleaned from experts throughout the state. 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.

What Is the Role of Lecture in NGSS?

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

When:
August 29, 2013 @ 12:00 am – 2:00 am
2013-08-29T00:00:00+00:00
2013-08-29T02:00:00+00:00
Where:
Mather Room, Sacramento County Office of Education
10474 Mather Boulevard
Mather, CA 95655
USA
Cost:
Free
Contact:
Connie Morrill
916-979-7004

by Peter A’Hearn

Is there a role for lecture in NGSS classrooms? Anyone who has spent much time working on the NGSS knows that NGSS is learner centered, more about helping students to develop the tools to investigate the world than about teachers supplying knowledge. The traditional teaching style of the teacher talking and students taking notes seems to be opposite of this vision.

This vision is supported by research indicating that traditional lecture is not an effective way to teach science. Nobel Prize winning physicist Dr. Carl Wieman makes a strong case against lecture as a way to teach science.  Click here to read a summary of his findings. Learn More…

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Written by Peter AHearn

Peter AHearn

Peter A’Hearn is the K-12 science specialist in the Palm Springs Unified School District and is Region 4 Director for CSTA.

Middle School Integrated Science – Getting Over It!

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

When:
August 29, 2013 @ 12:00 am – 2:00 am
2013-08-29T00:00:00+00:00
2013-08-29T02:00:00+00:00
Where:
Mather Room, Sacramento County Office of Education
10474 Mather Boulevard
Mather, CA 95655
USA
Cost:
Free
Contact:
Connie Morrill
916-979-7004

by Peter A’Hearn

6th graders design bionic hands as they study how body systems work together in a unit that was moved to 6th grade this year- photo by Peter A’Hearn

6th graders design bionic hands as they study how body systems work together in a unit that was moved to 6th grade this year- photo by Peter A’Hearn

Last spring I wrote an article/blog post that addressed the growing discussion about the decision to teach middle school integrated or discipline specific science. The article gives the rationale for the change and also some different models that were considered for how to transition.

There was a lot of feedback to that post: strongly supportive, deeply skeptical, and many follow up questions. Now that Palm Springs USD has finished the first year of the transition, I thought it would be a good time to look back and see how it went.

The middle school teacher leaders who helped to make the decision chose the “fast” transition plan below. Year 2 was what we just finished. 6th grade teachers (and kids) were introduced to structure and function in living things. 7th graders tried chemistry for the first time, and 8th graders played with waves. Everyone tried a little (or a lot) of engineering. Learn More…

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Written by Peter AHearn

Peter AHearn

Peter A’Hearn is the K-12 science specialist in the Palm Springs Unified School District and is Region 4 Director for CSTA.

Staying Connected by Volunteering

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

When:
August 29, 2013 @ 12:00 am – 2:00 am
2013-08-29T00:00:00+00:00
2013-08-29T02:00:00+00:00
Where:
Mather Room, Sacramento County Office of Education
10474 Mather Boulevard
Mather, CA 95655
USA
Cost:
Free
Contact:
Connie Morrill
916-979-7004

by Lisa Hegdahl

As an 8th grade science teacher in a district that is participating in the CA NGSS Early Implementation Initiative, I spent much of my summer break training with members of other Early Implementer districts (see NGSS Blog- Middle School Integrated Science- Getting Over It! By Peter A’hearn. Just as our students want to feel connected to each other (see Starting the School Year Right, by Joanne Michael) teachers also seek opportunities to connect and collaborate with other educators – even more so now with NGSS implementation actively happening in California. Perhaps connecting with others is the reason why, this year, the California Science Teachers Association had a record number of its members volunteer to serve on its committees. Teachers know that we are stronger when we come together to overcome our challenges. Learn More…

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Written by Lisa Hegdahl

Lisa Hegdahl

Lisa Hegdahl is an 8th grade science teacher at McCaffrey Middle School in Galt, CA and is President for CSTA.

Where to Go in Sacramento: Field Courses for the CSTA Conference

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

When:
August 29, 2013 @ 12:00 am – 2:00 am
2013-08-29T00:00:00+00:00
2013-08-29T02:00:00+00:00
Where:
Mather Room, Sacramento County Office of Education
10474 Mather Boulevard
Mather, CA 95655
USA
Cost:
Free
Contact:
Connie Morrill
916-979-7004

by Peter A’Hearn

When it comes to conferences I’m pretty much a workshop guy. You get lots of great ideas in a short time, lots of choices, and you are hearing it straight from teachers. But looking at the field studies being offered at the 2015 California Education Conference in Sacramento this October, I’m thinking I might just spend the whole conference learning science on the amazing field courses being offered.

Here are your choices:

AHearn_Field_Course_Photo_1The Science in Your Beer: Chemistry, Microbiology, and Sensory Analysis at Sudwerk Brewery – Visit with the scientists at the UC Davis Brewing Program, the yeast geeks at White Labs, and the brewers of Sudwerk Brewery to learn about the biochemistry and microbiology that goes into the beer you love to drink. We will share NGSS aligned activities (classroom appropriate) on reaction rate and population biology. You will also explore the chemistry of beer flavor and learn how to make taste testing scientifically rigorous! Learn More…

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Written by Peter AHearn

Peter AHearn

Peter A’Hearn is the K-12 science specialist in the Palm Springs Unified School District and is Region 4 Director for CSTA.