March/April 2017 – Vol. 29 No. 6

Exploratorium Opens at New Home April 17, 2013

Posted: Monday, April 1st, 2013

New Embarcadero Gem to Feature 150 New Exhibits, Bay Observatory, Outdoor Gallery and Free Civic Space

ExploratoriumOn April 17, 2013, the Exploratorium will open at Pier 15 at the heart of the revitalized San Francisco waterfront radically improving access to visitors from all over the world and dramatically enhancing the size and scope of the museum. With three times more space overall than its previous home, the new Exploratorium will engage the curiosity and creativity of visitors of any age as they explore 150 brand ­new exhibits amongst more than 600 that will be on view. For the first time, the Exploratorium expands its investigations into the bay, city, and outdoor landscape.

Bending light with prisms.

Bending light with prisms.

As the global leader in informal learning, an approach that encourages learning outside the classroom, and the world’s most experimental museum, the Exploratorium will make use of the remarkable new space to push the boundaries once again. For the first time in 44 years, the signature ah­hah! Exploratorium exhibits will be featured outdoors, taking advantage of the city and bay to encourage visitors to observe and engage in their environments like never before. Visitors will be able to experience their own storm by adjusting the frequency, size and velocity of raindrops (umbrella highly recommended), step into the mobile Camera Obscura and see an upside­down world before them, and interact in real­time with invisible life – teeny­tiny plankton that produce almost half the oxygen we breathe. The site will feature the Bay Observatory, an all­ glass building. The Fisher Bay Observatory Gallery and Terrace, on the second level, is for viewing the waterfront and the city, designed to allow visitors to explore the science of the bay, the landscape, and the human impacts that have shaped the Bay Area. The new Exploratorium will also offer 1.5 acres of free public space ­­ a part of the Outdoor Gallery, for visitors to enjoy the views and play with participatory exhibits tied to the surrounding environment.

Visitors play with the physics of orbiting, finding that spinning a disk on its side prolongs the time and distance of the orbit.

Visitors play with the physics of orbiting, finding that spinning a disk on its side prolongs the time and distance of the orbit.

The 330,000 square­foot indoor/outdoor project is being designed and constructed with the goal of becoming the largest net­zero energy museum in the United States, if not the world. True to the spirit of the Exploratorium and the nature of net­zero, achieving such an ambitious degree of energy ­efficiency will require monitoring and tinkering over time. The entire undertaking will be a real­time educational exhibit, with live energy use and photovoltaic production data on public display.

Along with the move, the Exploratorium will expand its programming and remain open late two nights a week. Wednesday it is open to the public from 10am-­10pm. And for those who want to experience this exuberant learning laboratory amongst other adults, the Exploratorium will be open exclusively to the 18 and older crowd on Thursday evenings for After Dark, from 6­10pm, with a cash bar. Special programs will be offered both evenings.

The opening of the new Exploratorium is one of the most highly anticipated events of the year. With the move to the new site, the world­renowned Exploratorium will attract even more visitors of all ages to play, observe and discover while soaking in the beauty of the bay and cityscape. But as always, exhibits will retain the familiar home­made authentic quality for which the Exploratorium is famous.

Opening partners are: PG&E, Premier Opening Partner and Lead Sustainability Partner; Chevron, Premier Opening Partner; Genentech, Premier Opening Partner; SunPower, Supporting Partner; Wells Fargo, Supporting Partner; KGO­TV, Premier Media Partner; San Francisco Chronicle, Premier Media Partner;San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority, Premier Media Partner.

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.

Leave a Reply

LATEST POST

California Science Curriculum Framework Now Available

Posted: Tuesday, March 14th, 2017

The pre-publication version of the new California Science Curriculum Framework is now available for download. This publication incorporates all the edits that were approved by the State Board of Education in November 2016 and was many months in the making. Our sincere thanks to the dozens of CSTA members were involved in its development. Our appreciation is also extended to the California Department of Education, the State Board of Education, the Instructional Quality Commission, and the Science Curriculum Framework and Evaluation Criteria Committee and their staff for their hard work and dedication to produce this document and for their commitment to the public input process. To the many writers and contributors to the Framework CSTA thanks you for your many hours of work to produce a world-class document.

For tips on how to approach this document see our article from December 2016: California Has Adopted a New Science Curriculum Framework – Now What …? If you would like to learn more about the Framework, consider participating in one of the Framework Launch events (a.k.a. Rollout #4) scheduled throughout 2017.

The final publication version (formatted for printing) will be available in July 2017. This document will not be available in printed format, only electronically.

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.

Call for CSTA Awards Nominations

Posted: Monday, March 13th, 2017

The 2017 Award Season is now open! One of the benefits of being a CSTA member is your eligibility for awards as well as your eligibility to nominate someone for an award. CSTA offers several awards and members may nominate individuals and organizations for the Future Science Teacher Award, the prestigious Margaret Nicholson Distinguished Service Award, and the CSTA Distinguished Contributions Award (organizational award). May 9, 2017 is the deadline for nominations for these awards. CSTA believes that the importance of science education cannot be overstated. Given the essential presence of the sciences in understanding the past and planning for the future, science education remains, and will increasingly be one of the most important disciplines in education. CSTA is committed to recognizing and encouraging excellence in science teaching through the presentation of awards to science educators and organizations who have made outstanding contributions in science education in the state and who are poised to continue the momentum of providing high quality, relevant science education into the future. 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.

Call for Volunteers – CSTA Committees

Posted: Monday, March 13th, 2017

Volunteer

CSTA is now accepting applications from regular, preservice, and retired members to serve on our volunteer committees! CSTA’s all-volunteer board of directors invites you to consider maximizing your member experience by volunteering for CSTA. CSTA committee service offers you the opportunity to share your expertise, learn a new skill, or do something you love to do but never have the opportunity to do in your regular day. CSTA committee volunteers do some pretty amazing things: 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.

A Friend in CA Science Education Now at CSTA Region 1 Science Center

Posted: Monday, March 13th, 2017

by Marian Murphy-Shaw

If you attended an NGSS Rollout phase 1-3 or CDE workshops at CSTA’s annual conference you may recall hearing from Chris Breazeale when he was working with the CDE. Chris has relocated professionally, with his passion for science education, and is now the Executive Director at the Explorit Science Center, a hands-on exploration museum featuring interactive STEM exhibits located at the beautiful Mace Ranch, 3141 5th St. in Davis, CA. Visitors can “think it, try it, and explorit” with a variety of displays that allow visitors to “do science.” To preview the museum, or schedule a classroom visit, see www.explorit.org. Learn More…

Written by Marian Murphy-Shaw

Marian Murphy-Shaw

Marian Murphy-Shaw is the student services director at Siskiyou County Office of Education and is CSTA’s Region 1 Director and chair of CSTA’s Policy Committee.

Learning to Teach in 3D

Posted: Monday, March 13th, 2017

by Joseph Calmer

Probably like you, NGSS has been at the forefront of many department meetings, lunch conversations, and solitary lesson planning sessions. Despite reading the original NRC Framework, the Ca Draft Frameworks, and many CSTA writings, I am still left with the question: “what does it actually mean for my classroom?”

I had an eye-opening experience that helped me with that question. It came out of a conversation that I had with a student teacher. It turns out that I’ve found the secret to learning how to teach with NGSS: I need to engage in dialogue about teaching with novice teachers. I’ve had the pleasure of teaching science in some capacity for 12 years. During that time pedagogy and student learning become sort of a “hidden curriculum.” It is difficult to plan a lesson for the hidden curriculum; the best way is to just have two or more professionals talk and see what emerges. I was surprised it took me so long to realize this epiphany. Learn More…

Written by Guest Contributor

From time to time CSTA receives contributions from guest contributors. The opinions and views expressed by these contributors are not necessarily those of CSTA. By publishing these articles CSTA does not make any endorsements or statements of support of the author or their contribution, either explicit or implicit. All links to outside sources are subject to CSTA’s Disclaimer Policy: http://www.classroomscience.org/disclaimer.