May/June 2017 – Vol. 29 No. 7

March Madness Equals Science Madness in San Diego

Posted: Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

by Donna Ross

As I write this, our men’s basketball team at San Diego State University is battling for the Mountain West title and they are ranked 21st in the Associated Press poll.  The energy in the arena on game nights is electrifying and the enthusiasm for March Madness is undeniable on our campus.  Across the city, there is another madness taking hold this month, too.  Science!  March has become the science month for San Diego. The sheer number of community members, scientists, non-profits, and educators donating their time to share their passion for science is also electrifying.  Now, if only we could get the science activities nationally televised along with the basketball games!

Having so many science events in the community and schools during the month of March has a variety of benefits.  There are the obvious advantages.  The nifty-fifty program brings scientists into classrooms all across the county. Students meet scientists, learn about current research, become excited about career opportunities, and rekindle an interest in the discipline.  But, beyond the benefits for our students, it has been fascinating to watch the effects on researchers and community members.  At planning meetings, I have heard adults commenting

  • “I had no idea this research was occurring here in San Diego”
  • “Your daughter was asking really good questions. Have her email me if she is interested in doing an internship.”
  • “Some of our local schools seem to need a lot of support, I’m wondering what I can do during the rest of the year”
  • “I don’t know why we haven’t ever shared our resources, we have a lot of overlap in our areas of research”
  • “I don’t know how to present my research to children, but I’ll do it if someone will help me think about what would work.”
  • “I have a graduate student who would be a great fit for your lab.”
  • “Why haven’t we collaborated on this before?”

Science madness in March brings people with shared interest together and builds connections that benefit the entire community.  I am keeping my fingers crossed for many continued successful science events and, of course, the Mountain West title for the Aztecs.

Here are just a few of the events taking place in the San Diego area this month.  For more information on these events and descriptions of many other opportunities, be sure to check out all of the events on the website for the San Diego Festival of Science and Engineering at http://sdsciencefestival.com

 

A sample of the Saturday, March 17 events:

San Diego State University, Science and Engineering Sampler

Saturday, March 17    11am-2pm  Free to the public
SDSU Campus, College of Sciences
Activities and demonstrations of science and technology projects taking place on campus.  Appropriate for all ages.

California State University, San Marcos Super STEM Saturday
Saturday, March 17    11am-2pm  Free to the public
CSUSM Campus
Activities and demonstrations of science and technology projects taking place on campus.  Appropriate for all ages.

San Diego Miramar College,  Science Fun
Saturday, March 17  9am-12pm  Free to the public
Miramar College Science and Technology Building
Appropriate for ages 9-99

Scripps Research Institute, SMART Teams Exploration
Saturday, March 17   9:30am-12pm  Free
Explore groundbreaking new research using Rapid Prototyping Technology.

 

A sample of the Sunday, March 18 events:

San Diego River Park Foundation, River Bugs are Cool!
Sunday, March 18   12pm-3pm  Free
Mission Valley Preserve and Interpretive Garden
Learn how river bugs can unlock the secret of the San Diego River’s health.

Cymer presents Imagination Innovation
Sunday, March 18  1pm-4pm  Free
Cymer Campus
Experiments and robots!!!

A sample of the Monday, March 19 events:

Tony Hawk and Physics of Skateboarding
Monday, March 19    10am-11am   Free
Carmel Valley Skate Park

Training for Endurance Events
Monday, March 19   6pm-7:30pm  Free
Running and training tips with Dr. Jason Karp

A sample of the Tuesday, March 20 events:

General Atomics Tour w/ Bus
Tuesday, March 20    9am-12pm  Free (bus included)
Facility tour of General Atomics for school groups

Maritime Robotics
Tuesday, March 20  3:30-5pm  Free
2877 Historic Decatur Rd.
Tour and demo of mini-ROV underwater vehicles

A sample of the Wednesday, March 21 events:

Crime Scene and Traffic Accident Investigation
Wednesday, March 21  9am-1pm  Free
Escondido Police Department

Advancing Understanding of Human Health and Disease
Wednesday, March 21  3pm-6pm  Free
Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine

Science Speed Round
Wednesday, March 21  6pm-8pm  Free
Short talks about mind-boggling science!
The Neurosciences Institute

A sample of the Thursday, March 22 events:

Career Night
Thursday, March 22,    5-7:30pm  Free
UC San Diego Extension
Career guidance and course opportunities

Science Applications International Corporation Technology Demos
Thursday, March 22,  5:30-7pm  Free
SAIC Vista Technology Center
Learn how VACIS technology allows people to see through trucks and other things.

A sample of the Friday, March 23 events:

Mad Science presents Spin, Pop, Boom
Friday, March 23   1-2:45 (2 sessions)  Free
Beaumont Elementary

Engineering is Fun:  Converting Ideas into Reality
Friday, March 23 2-5:30pm   Free
Qualcomm Campus

And the culminating event:  Expo Day at Petco Park

Science Festival, March 24th
Saturday, March 24   10am-5pm  All ages, Free
A full day of free science and technology activities for the whole family.

Donna Ross is associate professor of science education at San Diego State University and is CSTA’s 4-year college director.

Written by Donna Ross

Donna Ross is Associate Professor of Science Education at San Diego State University.

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CSTA Annual Conference Early Bird Rates End July 14

Posted: Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

by Jessica Sawko

Teachers engaged in workshop activity

Teachers engaging in hands-on learning during a workshop at the 2016 CSTA conference.

Don’t miss your chance to register at the early bird rate for the 2017 CSTA Conference – the early-bird rate closes July 14. Need ideas on how to secure funding for your participation? Visit our website for suggestions, a budget planning tool, and downloadable justification letter to share with your admin. Want to take advantage of the early rate – but know your district will pay eventually? Register online today and CSTA will reimburse you when we receive payment from your district/employer. (For more information on how that works contact Zi Stair in the office for details – 916-979-7004 or zi@cascience.org.)

New Information Now Available On-line:

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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Posted: Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

Jill Grace

Jill Grace, CSTA President, 2017-2019

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This new year also brings with it a new president for CSTA. As of July 1, 2017 Jill Grace is the president of the California Science Teachers Association. Jill is a graduate of California State University, Long Beach, a former middle school science teacher, and is currently a Regional Director with the K-12 Alliance @ WestEd where she works with California NGSS K-8 Early Implementation Initiative districts and charter networks in the San Diego area.

Outgoing Board Members

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  • Valerie Joyner (Region 1 Director: 2009 – 2013, Primary Director: 2013 – 2017)
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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.

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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.

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Posted: Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson unveiled an addition of 285 award-winning titles to the Recommended Literature: Prekindergarten Through Grade Twelve list.

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The Recommended Literature: Prekindergarten Through Grade Twelve list is a collection of more than 8,000 titles of recommended reading for children and adolescents. Reflecting contemporary and classic titles, including California authors, this online list provides an exciting range of literature that students should be reading at school and for pleasure. Works include fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and drama to provide for a variety of tastes, interests, and abilities. Learn More…

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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.

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The father of one of my students gave me a book: In the Beginning: Compelling Evidence for Creation and the Flood by Walt Brown, Ph. D. He had heard that I was teaching Plate Tectonics and wanted me to consider another perspective. The book offered the idea that the evidence for plate tectonics could be better understood if we considered the idea that beneath the continent of Pangaea was a huge underground layer of water that suddenly burst forth from a rift between the now continents of Africa and South America. The waters shot up and the continents hydroplaned apart on the water layer to their current positions. The force of the movement pushed up great mountain ranges which are still settling to this day, resulting in earthquakes along the margins of continents. This had happened about 6,000 years ago and created a great worldwide flood. Learn More…

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Written by Peter AHearn

Peter AHearn

Peter A’Hearn is the Region 4 Director for CSTA.