January/February 2018 – Vol. 31 No. 2

Farewell from Galt, CA

Posted: Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

McCaffreyMiddleSchool-Hegdal

McCaffrey Middle School, Galt, CA

by Lisa Hegdahl

I am typically not a reflective person. Instead, I tend to get swept up in the day to day moments of teaching, meetings, phone calls, and home life. With one exception – the end of the school year.

While my 8th graders are enjoying the many ends of Middle School activities, I spend the last week of the academic year re-filing, re-packing, and re-organizing a classroom I have lost the battle to somewhere back in October. As the last day winds down, my students stack all the lab tables against the far wall and we are finished for the year. Gathering the last items from my refrigerator, I begin to head out the door for summer ‘vacation’. At this moment, every year, something stops me. I turn around and look back at my clean, bare-floored classroom. Without intention, I remember all that took place there in the past 180 days with 150 students who have now gone on to high school. I remember laughter and struggles, and, at times, a little chaos. I hope that somehow during all that time, I provided my students with valuable experiences and that I was patient and kind to them. For most of them, I will never know.

I find myself in a similar situation now. In 2013, I was nominated and elected President of the California Science Teachers Association. I took office on July 1, 2015, and began a 2-year journey that will end on June 30, 2017. As we make the final transition of information and responsibility to CSTA’s President-Elect, Jill Grace, the same kind of end-of-school reflective inklings are creeping into my mind.

Indications of these past 2 years are everywhere. The surfaces of my desks at home and school are marked with Post-It notes beginning with verbs like – “contact …”; “review…”; “answer …”; “edit …”; “attend …”. My Google folders are packed with agenda items, committee notes, and draft articles. In one entitled, “President Correspondences”, letters bear my signature and were sent to members of various state and local organizations. Another folder, “President Messages’”, contains the 21 articles I submitted to California Classroom Science. My email folders have labels such as CA4NGSS, Conference, CTC, Framework, LOC, NGSS Collaborative, Membership/Marketing, Rollout 4, and SBE. My desk at home contains assorted CSTA binders, but mostly my meeting notes are in ‘well organized’ piles – another filing battle I have lost.

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Much has changed in the California Science landscape since I took office, and the hard work of the CSTA staff, Board of Directors, Committee volunteers, CSTA members, and CSTA partners were instrumental in making those changes happen and happen in a way that is positive for California Science teachers and their students. I am regularly amazed at what this group of focused, driven, passionate people can accomplish when they collaborate and innovate together.

I am grateful for the opportunity the CSTA membership provided me when they elected me President. As I said in my first President’s Message, “I am incredibly humbled and proud” to have represented such a dedicated and talented group. A huge thank you to Jessica Sawko, CSTA Executive Director, the CSTA Board of Directors, and our CSTA partners who supported me in the work for which I was tasked. I also need to thank the Science teachers at McCaffrey Middle School in Galt, where I teach full-time, as well our amazing school and district administration. They were all incredibly supportive and patient with me as I attempted to carry out the duties of both jobs.

Finally, my very best wishes to our new CSTA President, Jill Grace. As many of you know, she has already shown herself to be a tremendous leader as well as an accomplished, knowledgeable educator and scientist. Under her leadership, CSTA will continue to Promote High Quality Science Education for all.

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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 Past-President of CSTA.

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LATEST POST

Accelerating into NGSS – A Statewide Rollout Series Now Accepting Registrations

Posted: Friday, January 19th, 2018

Are you feeling behind on the implementation of NGSS? Then Accelerating into NGSS – the Statewide Rollout event – is right for you!

WHO SHOULD ATTEND
If you have not experienced Phases 1-4 of the Statewide Rollout, or are feeling behind with the implementation of NGSS, the Accelerating Into NGSS Statewide Rollout will provide you with the greatest hits from Phases 1-4!

OVERVIEW
Accelerating Into NGSS Statewide Rollout is a two-day training geared toward grade K-12 academic coaches, administrators, curriculum leads, and teacher leaders. Check-in for the two-day rollout begins at 7:30 a.m., followed by a continental breakfast. Sessions run from 8:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. on Day One and from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Day Two.

Cost of training is $250 per attendee. Fee includes all materials, continental breakfast, and lunch on both days. It is recommended that districts send teams of four to six, which include at least one administrator. Payment can be made by check or credit card. If paying by check, registration is NOT complete until payment has been received. All payments must be received prior to the Rollout location date you are attending. Paying by credit card secures your seat at time of registration. No purchase orders accepted. No participant cancellation refunds.

For questions or more information, please contact Amy Kennedy at akennedy@sjcoe.net or (209) 468-9027.

REGISTER

http://bit.ly/ACCELERATINGINTONGSS

DATES & LOCATIONS
MARCH 28-29, 2018
Host: San Mateo County Office of Education
Location: San Mateo County Office of Education, Redwood City

APRIL 10-11, 2018
Host: Orange County Office of Education
Location: Brandman University, Irvine

MAY 1-2, 2018
Host: Tulare County Office of Education
Location: Tulare County Office of Education, Visalia

MAY 3-4, 2018
Host: San Bernardino Superintendent of Schools
Location: West End Educational Service Center, Rancho Cucamonga

MAY 7-8, 2018
Host: Sacramento County Office of Education
Location: Sacramento County Office of Education Conference Center and David P. Meaney Education Center, Mather

JUNE 14-15, 2018
Host: Imperial County Office of Education
Location: Imperial Valley College, Imperial

Presented by the California Department of Education, California County Superintendents Educational Services Association/County Offices of Education, K-12 Alliance @WestEd, California Science Project, and the California Science Teachers Association.

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.

The Teaching and Learning Collaborative, Reflections from an Administrator

Posted: Friday, January 19th, 2018

by Kelly Patchen

My name is Mrs. Kelly Patchen, and I am proud to be an elementary assistant principal working in the Tracy Unified School District (TUSD) at Louis Bohn and McKinley Elementary Schools. Each of the schools I support are Title I K-5 schools with about 450 students, a diverse student population, a high percentage of English Language Learners, and students living in poverty. We’re also lucky to be part of the CA NGSS K-8 Early Implementation Initiative with the K-12 Alliance. 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 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.

2018 CSTA Conference Call for Proposals

Posted: Wednesday, January 17th, 2018

CSTA is pleased to announce that we are now accepting proposals for 90-minute workshops and three- and six-hour short courses for the 2018 California Science Education Conference. Workshops and short courses make up the bulk of the content and professional learning opportunities available at the conference. In recognition of their contribution, members who present a workshop or short course receive 50% off of their registration fees. Click for more information regarding proposals, or submit one today by following the links below.

Short Course Proposal

Workshop Proposal 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.

CSTA’s New Administrator Facebook Group Page

Posted: Monday, January 15th, 2018

by Holly Steele

The California Science Teachers Association’s mission is to promote high-quality science education, and one of the best practice’s we use to fulfill that mission is through the use of our Facebook group pages. CSTA hosts several closed and moderated Facebook group pages for specific grade levels, (Elementary, Middle, and High School), pages for district coaches and science education faculty, and the official CSTA Facebook page. These pages serve as an online resource for teachers and coaches to exchange teaching methods, materials, staying update on science events in California and asking questions. CSTA is happy to announce the creation of a 6th group page called, California Administrators Supporting Science. 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.

Find Your Reason to Engage

Posted: Monday, January 15th, 2018

by Jill Grace

I was recently reflecting on events in the news and remembered that several years ago, National Public Radio had a story about a man named Stéphane Hessel, a World War II French resistance fighter, Nazi concentration camp survivor, and contributor to the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The story focused on a book he had published, Time for Outrage (2010).

In it, Hessel makes the argument that the worst attitude is indifference:

“Who is in charge; who are the decision makers? It’s not always easy to discern. We’re not dealing with a small elite anymore, whose actions we can clearly identify. We are dealing with a vast, interdependent world that is interconnected in unprecedented ways. But there are unbearable things all around us. You have to look for them; search carefully. Open your eyes and you will see. This is what I tell young people: If you spend a little time searching, you will find your reasons to engage. The worst attitude is indifference. ‘There’s nothing I can do; I get by’ – adopting this mindset will deprive you of one of the fundamental qualities of being human: outrage.  Our capacity for protest is indispensable, as is our freedom to engage.”

His words make me take pause when I think of the status of science in the United States. A general “mistrust” of science is increasingly pervasive, as outlined in a New Yorker article from the summer of 2016. 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.