January/February 2018 – Vol. 31 No. 2

News and Events in Region 2

Posted: Wednesday, February 1st, 2012

by Eric Lewis

Please let me know if there are things that you’d like to add to our Region’s offerings!  Also, encourage your colleagues to join CSTA.  I’m hoping that we’ll have the opportunity to grow our organization and expand to meet your needs and your colleague’s needs.  To that end, please feel free to email me directly so that I can represent your questions and concerns with the CSTA board as a whole.

You may also want to consider leading a workshop at our San Jose 2012 Education Conference.  For more information and to submit a workshop proposal, click here!  Proposals are due by March 6, 2012.

Eric Lewis, lewise2@sfusd.edu

SETI Institute Colloquium Series: Dispersal of Protoplanetary Disks
1/4/12, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
189 Bernardo Avenue, Mountain View, CA
Protoplanetary disks originate during star formation and evolve rapidly, to form planetary systems before they disperse in a few million years. Dr. Gorti will describe disk evolution and discuss disk dispersal mechanisms in the context of recent theoretical models. Theory will be compared with observations to summarize our current understanding of how disks evolve and the constraints they set on the time available for planet formation.
Speaker: Uma Gorti, SETI Institute
For more information visit http://www.seti.org/talks, email info@seti.org,or call 650.961.6633

Free First Wednesday at Discovery Museum
2/1/12, 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Bay Area Discovery Museum, 557 McReynolds Road, Fort Baker, Sausalito
Free Museum admission all day
For more information, email contact@badm.org or call (415) 339-3900.

Open Source Robotics
Wednesday, 02/01/12, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
CITRIS at UC Berkeley, Sutardja Dai Hall, Banatao Auditorium, Berkeley, CA 94720
Over the next 10 years, personal robots (as opposed to industrial robots) have the potential to improve people’s lives by taking automation to a new level. Like personal computers of 30 years ago, the personal robotics industry will take off and become an economic engine. But robotics is a complex, multidisciplinary field, and fielding successful applications requires expertise ranging from hardware (mechanical and electrical) to social science. By working together on an open source software platform, we can accelerate progress in the field and more quickly field successful applications. Willow Garage has partnered with Stanford University and many other top robotics laboratories around the world to create such an open source code base. The robot operating system, ROS, is quickly becoming the de facto platform for robotics research. I will argue that most if not all robotics companies should join the ROS bandwagon, as a way to move the entire industry forward quickly.
Speaker: Steve Cousins, Willow Garage
Website: http://citris-uc.org/

Frailty, thy Name is Not Always Woman: Health and Disease of Women in the Past
Wednesday, 02/01/12, 12:10 PM – 1:00 PM
UC Berkeley, Archaeology Research Facility, 2251 College Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94720
The unique nature of the human skeleton as a product of both tissue level bone biology as well as behavior over the life course, provides bioarchaeologists with a powerful perspective on the construction of gendered identity in past populations. Variation or changes in bone morphology observed on the skeleton have particularly been used in the study of gendered health. However, observation of traces of health and disease on the skeleton are first viewed within the lens of biological sex, casting subsequent interpretations into normative reconstructions of identity. For example, the frequent observation of bone loss (or osteoporosis) in the bioarchaeological record is typically regarded as the inevitable outcome of the female skeleton bound by the aging body and reproductive hormones. Drawing on empirical studies of bone maintenance in the bioarchaeological record I have conducted using a life course perspective, I demonstrate how patterns of bone loss are not only directed by reproductive biology but uniquely crafted by individual and population-specific gender-related choice and roles.
Speaker: Sabrina Agarwal, Professor, Anthropology, UC Berkeley Room 101.

Food webs in river networks: towards predictive mapping
Wednesday, 02/01/12, Starts at 3:30 PM
Romberg Tiburon Center for Environmental Studies, 3152 Paradise Drive, Bay Conference Center, South Bay Room, Tiburon, CA 94920
Speaker: Dr. Mary Power, UC Berkeley
Email: rtcinfo@sfsu.com, Phone: (415) 338-6063

Living with Mountain Lions
Wednesday, 02/01/12, Starts at 6:00 PM
Pacifica Sharp Park Library, 104 Hilton Way, Pacifica, CA 94044
Mountain lions have recently been seen at sites in the Golden Gate National Parks-Milagra Ridge, Mori Point, Rancho Corral de Tierra-and San Pedro Valley County Park.

Please join mountain lion expert Zara McDonald of Felidae (www.felidaefund.org) as she discusses mountain lion ecology and how to safely coexist with these important parts of our natural ecosystem.

February LASER Event
Wednesday, 02/01/12, 6:45 PM – 8:55 PM
LASER Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous, Stanford University, Pigott Hall, Room 113, Stanford, CA 94305
6:45pm-7pm: Socializing/networking.
7pm – 7:25pm: Daniel Small and Luca Antonucci on “First Light”
The Hubble Ultra Deep Field imaging system unveiled the deepest portrait of the visible universe ever achieved by humankind that reveals the first light from 13.5 billion years ago.
7:25-7:50pm: Anne Fougeron (Architect) on “City of the Future”
As of 2008 over 80% of the land of the world that is suitable for raising crops is in use. Where will we find the farm land we need? By 2040, 80% of the world’s population will reside in urban centers, pushing urban edges further out into neighboring agricultural land. How will we feed ourselves?
7:50-8:05: BREAK
Before or after the break, anyone in the audience currently working within the intersections of art and science will have 30 seconds to share their work. Please present your work as a teaser so that those who are interested can seek you out during social time following the event.
8:05-8:30pm: Zann Gill (former NASA scientist) on “Collaborative Intelligence”
How evolution and natural systems can inform social problem-solving
8:30pm-8:55pm: hil Ross (artist) on “Mycotecture”
Fungi can be used to transform agricultural waste into durable and low impact materials at room temperature. The future is moldy. In this presentation Phil Ross will describe his research on growing a building out of living fungus.

Sleep: How Much Do We Need? How Do We Get What We Need?

Wednesday, 02/01/12, Starts at 7:00 PM
Windrush School Library, 1800 Elm Street, El Cerrito, CA 94530
Dr. Allison Harvey is a faculty member of the UC Berkeley Department of Psychology and Director of the Golden Bear Sleep and Mood Research Clinic. Her research focuses on the relationship between sleep and mood, and on treatments to improve sleep in adolescents and adults.

29th Annual Bunyan Lecture
Wednesday, 02/01/12, 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM
Stanford University, Mudd Chemistry Building, Braun Auditorium, Stanford, CA 94305
Prof. Andrea Ghez of UCLA will give the annual Bunyan lecture.  Prof. Ghez’s research is focused on using and developing high spatial resolution imaging techniques to study star formation and investigating the proposed massive black hole at the center of our Galaxy.

Free Day at the Exploratorium
Wednesday, 02/01/12, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Exploratorium. 3601 Lyon Street, San Francisco, CA 94123
Museum admission is free the first Wednesday of every month.
Email: visit@exploratorium.edu

Free Day at Botanical Gardens
Thursday, 02/02/12, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM (No entry after 4:30 PM)
UC Botanical Garden, 200 Centennial Drive, Berkeley, CA 94720
Free admission to the Garden the first Thursday of each month.
Email: garden@berkeley.edu, Phone: 510-643-2755
Website: http://botanicalgarden.berkeley.edu/

Artificial Photosynthesis: A Photovoltaic Perspective
Friday, 02/03/12, 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
UC Berkeley, Cory Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720, Room 521
A practical method to use sunlight to generate liquid transportation fuels would be a carbon-neutral energy source which could dramatically change the landscape of global energy generation. The fundamental steps involved in developing such an “artificial photosynthesis” scheme will be discussed, along with the scientific barriers which have prevented development of a feasible system to date. At LBNL, an approach based on inorganic light absorbers coupled to oxidation and reduction catalysts is being developed in the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP). This presentation will focus on the photovoltaic (PV) element which provides the electrical driving force to enable catalysts to perform the desired chemistry.

The minimum voltage required to split water into H2 and O2 is 1.23 V (values for reducing CO2 to methanol or to methane are similar). The JCAP PV approach uses separate photocathodes (H2 or hydrocarbon producing) and photoanodes (O2 producing) arranged in a tandem geometry. P-InP photocathodes optimized by surface nanostructuring have current densities well over 30 mA cm-2 under AM 1.5G illumination and H2 production efficiencies under bias approaching 15%; these values are comparable to what is achieved in InP solar cells. Both thin film and nanostructured metal oxide photoanodes have shown good stability under water oxidation conditions but have lower current densities than the photocathodes. Initial results of spontaneous (no-bias) water splitting from series connected photocathodes and photoanodes will also be discussed.

Dr. Joel W. Ager, Lawrence Berkeley National Labs

The Hunt for Another Earth (moved to theatre instead of planetarium)
Friday, 02/03/12, Starts at 8:00 PM
College of San Mateo Theater near the front of the college,1700 W Hillsdale Blvd, San Mateo, CA 94402
The new Kepler spaceborn telescope is hunting for Earth-size planets, with hundreds in its sights.  Kepler has already found definitively rocky planets, like Earth, and is now hunting for habitable ones. This talk will present up-to-the-minute results from the Kepler Team. Biologists are working with astronomers to assess the environmental conditions necessary for life, especially intelligent life, on planets elsewhere in the universe.
Location on campus has been changed.  This presentation will be in the CSM Theater near the front of the college-NOT in the Planetarium.

Life at the Edge: Life in Extreme Environments on Earth and the Search for Life in the Universe
Saturday, 2/04/12, Starts at 8:00 PM
San Jose Astronomical Association, Houge Park, Twilight Drive, San Jose, CA 95124
Speaker: Dr. Lynn Rothschild

Free Sunday at the California Academy of Sciences
Sunday, 02/05/12, 11:00 PM – 5:00 PM (No entry after 4:00 PM)
California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Dr., San Francisco, CA 94118
Free Day Changes
The Academy is changing its free day policy to target more working families, who were previously unable to come on the Wednesday free days. We hope that this change to weekend dates will allow a wider range of people to attend.

Starting in 2012, the Academy’s monthly Free Wednesday will be replaced with a quarterly Free Sunday. The free days for 2012 will be:

  • February 5, 2012
  • June 3, 2012
  • September 16, 2012
  • December 9, 2012

Email: info@calacademy.org, Phone: (415) 379-8000, http://www.calacademy.org/

Butterflies 101
Monday, 02/06/12, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave, Albany, CA 94706
“Butterflies 101” for the San Francisco Bay Area. San Francisco butterfly biologist Liam O’Brien speaks and shows slides on the fascinating variety of Bay Area butterflies, as well as his project to save the rare Green Hairstreak butterfly

Can Microbial Symbionts Protect Amphibians from a Pandemic Fungal Pathogen?
Tuesday, 02/07/12, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Sonoma State University – Biology Colloquium, 1801 E Cotati Ave, Darwin Hall, Room 103, Rohernt Park, CA 94928
Speaker: Dr. Vance Vredenburg, Dept. of Biology, S.F. State University

Past Climate Change from the Tropics to the Poles: New Information from Corals and Sediment Cores
Wednesday, 02/08/12, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
SETI Institute Colloquium Series, 189 Bernardo Ave, Mountain View, CA 94043
Much of what we know about the precise nature of “natural climate variability” comes from the study of geological and cryospheric archives of past climate. Cores from large coral colonies reveal sub-monthly changes in ocean conditions extending back several centuries while sediment cores from Antarctic waters tell us about past rapid changes in the Antarctic ice sheet. I’ll provide an update on what is new in the world of past climate analysis and its relevance to the global warming debate.
Speaker: Rob Dunbar, Stanford University
Email: info@seti.org, Phone: 650.961.6633, http://www.seti.org/talks

Diluvian Daftness: How Creationists Misrepresent the Geology of the Grand Canyon
Wednesday, 02/08/12, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Cafe Valparaiso, 3105 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94705
How is one of the most well known and frequently visited national parks being used by creationists to argue for Noah’s Flood as a historical event? From presentations at geological conferences to rafting trips, creationists are increasingly staking a claim to the Grand Canyon’s geology to promote the idea of a 6,000 year-old Earth.

Steven Newton, Programs & Policy Director of the National Center for Science Education, will explain what creationists say about Grand Canyon geology, why they say it, and how science shows their claims to be unsupportable. Please join us at this FREE “Skeptalk” presented by the Bay Area Skeptics.

For more information, contact Tucker Hiattt at tucker@wonderfest.org or call 415-577-1126

Restoring Ecosystems: Applications in Engineering and Earth Sciences with Rachel Kamman, PE
Wednesday, 02/08/12, 7:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Marin Science Seminar, 320 Nova Albion Way, Terra Linda High School Rm 207, San Rafael, CA 94903
Marin Science Seminar for Teens, Educators & their Families presents:
Restoring Ecosystems: Applications in Engineering and Earth Sciences” Kamman Hydrology & Engineering’s mission is to provide hydrologic, engineering and geomorphology support in the restoration, enhancement and protection of watershed, river, wetland and coastal systems. Hydrologist Rachel Kamman will explain what a hydrologist does and how hydrologists can help the environment.

Rachel Z. Kamman PE is a consulting hydrologist whose work focuses on ecological habitat restoration. Her San Rafael based consulting practice focuses on projects that revolve around sensitive wetland, fishery, and/or riparian habitat issues and problems. Rachel specializes in the fields of hydraulic and hydrodynamic analysis and modeling, focusing on the protection and restoration of estuarine and wetland systems. Typically, Rachel Kamman works on multi-disciplined projects, collaborating closely with biologists/botanists, ecologists, planners, engineers, and/or regulatory and resource agency staff. She holds a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Lafayette College and an M. Eng., in Hydraulics, Coastal Engineering, Hydrology & Geomorphology from UC Berkeley.


For more information, contact Alfia Wallace at marinscienceseminar@gmail.com, Phone: (415) 479-4106 or 415-860-2573

A Visual Tour of San Francisco’s Native Wildflowers
Thursday, 02/09/12, 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM
San Francisco Naturalist Society, Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 94114
Margo Bors has been doing habitat restoration and documenting San Francisco’s native plants and habitats for more than 15 years. She is an artist who has had numerous solo exhibitions in both art and photography, including several at the Helen Crocker Russell Library of Horticulture in Golden Gate Park.

Margo Bors has maintained a studio on Potrero Hill for many years. Her early art experience was as a muralist and founding member of Precita Eyes Muralists. Margo’s art and interests have consistently centered on the natural world. She is active in the California Native Plant Society (CNPS), and as photo documentation chair of the CNPS Yerba Buena Chapter, she has had an opportunity to photograph a wide range of San Francisco’s native wildflowers. She has over 300 images in the UC Digital Library and both her artwork and photographs have appeared extensively in publications of conservation groups from the Audubon Society to Bay Nature magazine. A sample of her art and photography can be seen at www.margobors.com.

For more information, email: JKodiak@earthlink.net or call (415) 225-3830

Come to Foothill Observatory and join us in the exploration of our Universe!
Foothill Observatory Friday Evening Program
Friday, 02/10/12, 9:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Foothill College Observatory, 12345 El Monte Road, The observatory is next to parking lot 4, Los Altos Hills, CA 94022
Come to Foothill Observatory and join us in the exploration of our Universe!

Foothill Observatory is open for public viewing every clear Friday evening from 9:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m. Visitors can view the wonders of the universe through the observatory’s new computer-controlled 16-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope. Views of objects in our solar system may include craters and mountains on the moon, the moons and cloud-bands of Jupiter, the rings of Saturn, etc. The choice of targets for any evening’s viewing depends on the season and what objects are currently in the sky.

On clear, dark, moonless nights, the telescopes give visitors views into the deeper reaches of space. Star clusters, nebulae, and distant galaxies provide dramatic demonstrations of the vastness of the cosmos.

Confirm before you go that the observatory will be open!

The public viewing programs at Foothill are free of charge and are open to guests of all ages. Please note that the observatory is closed when the weather is cloudy. Also note that visitor parking permits are available from the machines in the parking lots for $2.00.

For more information on Evening/Weekend Programs email: cohndiana@foothill.edu or call (650) 949-7711

All About Owls
Saturday, 02/11/12, 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM
Don Edwards Refuge Environmental Education Center, Alviso, CA
Learn all that you’ve ever wanted to learn about owls here at the refuge! Where do owls eat? How do we not hear them when they flap their wings? Are owls the brainiacs of the bird world? Through an interactive presentation and owl pellet dissection, we’ll find the answers to all these questions. Paul Bridges will lead the way. Please call Debra to make reservations. Phone: 408-262-5513

Oh Where Oh Where is the Little Grey Fox
Saturday, 02/11/12, 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Don Edwards Refuge Headquarters & Visitors Center, 1 Marshlands Road, off Thornton Avenue, Freemont, CA 94560

Come learn about the California grey fox, the only canine which can climb trees. What do they look like? Where do they live? What do they eat? Where have they been seen? What’s in our habitat that makes them unique to the Bay Area? Program is a 1- mile hike on level terrain. Dress warmly, bring binoculars and rain gear. Led by Roy Sasai. Phone: 510-792-0222 ext 363

The Salt Marshes: Then and Now
Sunday, 02/12/12, 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Don Edwards Refuge Headquarters & Visitors Center, 1 Marshlands Road, off Thornton Avenue, Freemont, CA 94560
Approximately 85% of San Francisco Bay’s wetlands have disappeared over the last 200 years due to industry and development, impacting the wildlife that lived in and around them. Some of the plants and animals have made a comeback. Learn the history of the salt marshes and the plant and animal life affected by the changes. The presentation includes a slideshow followed by an optional walk (approximately 45 minutes, weather permitting) to view a salt marsh and the remains of a salt evaporation pond. Led by Gregg Aronson. Call 510-792-0222 ext. 363 for reservations.

Mysteries of the oscillations of gas accreting onto black holes, neutron stars, and white dwarfs
Wednesday, 02/15/12, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
SETI Institute Colloquium Series, 189 Bernardo Ave, Mountain View, CA 94043

Dr. Wagoner will survey the QPOs (quasi-periodic oscillations) seen in the luminosity fluctuation power spectra of compact objects accreting from a binary companion star. There is little understanding of the different frequency relationships in these systems. Dr. Wagoner will focus on the theory and observations of black holes, and compare the predictions of their spin via diskoseismolgy with those from two other methods.
Speaker: Bob Wagoner, Stanford
Email: info@seti.org Phone: 650.961.6633, http://www.seti.org/talks

Saturn V – The first 700 Seconds
Wednesday, 02/15/12, Starts at 7:30 PM
Randall Museum, 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 94114
Join Faride Khalaf for a presentation on Saturn V – The First 700 Seconds. NASA launched thirteen Saturn Vs from the Kennedy Space Center between 1967 and 1973. It remains the tallest, heaviest and most powerful rocket ever brought to operational status. This presentation will highlight some of the interesting and little known technical aspects of the various missions. Khalaf will re-examine the Apollo program, focusing on some of the details starting from launch preparation to the last rocket blast that sent the gallant crew and their spacecraft to the moon.
Event Contact:

Transforming Energy in the Twenty-First Century
Thursday, 02/16/12, Starts at 4:15 PM
Lockheed Martin Colloquia, 3251 Hanover St, ATC Auditorium in Building 202, Palo Alto, CA 94304
Energy use is fundamental to modern societies and a primary way we humans interact with climate, ocean pH, and many other natural systems that provide essential services.  It is time to change the energy mix to reduce those impacts.   Estimates of available resources indicate that there is no shortage of energy available for conversion to services.  The challenge is to do so at costs that are within reason, with sources of supply that are secure, and with impacts that protect essential natural systems.  Options for doing that, and the research required to make it possible, are considered in this talk.

Speaker: Lynn Orr is the Keleen and Carlton Beal Professor in Petroleum Engineering in the Department of Energy Resources Engineering and Director of the Precourt Institute for Energy at Stanford University.  He joined Stanford in 1985, and served as Dean of the School of Earth Sciences at Stanford from 1994 to 2002 and as Director of the Global Climate and Energy Project from 2002 to 2008.  He a member of the National Academy of Engineering and the Board of Directors of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. http://www.lockheedmartin.com/us/ssc/atc/colloquia/2012colloquia.html

Breaking Trail: An Inspirational Evening with Arlene Blum
Thursday, 02/16/12, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM
REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, CA 94702
Best known as the leader of the first American team to summit Annapurna I in Nepal and author of “Annapurna: A Woman’s Place”, Arlene Blum played a leading role in more than 20 successful mountaineering expeditions, including climbs of Denali and Everest. She is also the founder of Green Science Policy Institute, based in Berkeley. In tonight’s presentation, Arlene will share stories and photographs from her celebrated memoir, “Breaking Trail: A Climbing Life”, and from recent adventures both in the mountains and in her scientific and policy work. Come learn about the challenges of exploring some of the most remote and exquisite places on the planet and of working to eliminate the use of toxic chemicals in consumer products. Find out what it takes to lead a team to success, whether in the mountains or in protecting our health and environment. If you register for this presentation online, we will hold a seat for you until the scheduled start time.  Limited to first 70 to register. Phone: 510-527-4140

The Sturgeon in San Francisco Bay: How critical can a 10,000 year old Bay be for a 100 million year old fish?
Thursday, 02/16/12, Starts at 7:30 PM
San Francisco Natural History Series,199 Museum Way, The Randall Museum, San Francisco, CA 94114
Michael McGowan, fisheries oceanographer and aquatic ecologist, will discuss his research on how the ecology of the green and white sturgeon differ in their life history and in how they use the Bay.

Come to Foothill Observatory and join us in the exploration of our Universe!
Foothill Observatory Friday Evening Program
Friday, 02/17/12, 9:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Foothill College Observatory, 12345 El Monte Road, The observatory is next to parking lot 4, Los Altos Hills, CA 94022
Come to Foothill Observatory and join us in the exploration of our Universe!

Foothill Observatory is open for public viewing every clear Friday evening from 9:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m. Visitors can view the wonders of the universe through the observatory’s new computer-controlled 16-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope. Views of objects in our solar system may include craters and mountains on the moon, the moons and cloud-bands of Jupiter, the rings of Saturn, etc. The choice of targets for any evening’s viewing depends on the season and what objects are currently in the sky.

On clear, dark, moonless nights, the telescopes give visitors views into the deeper reaches of space. Star clusters, nebulae, and distant galaxies provide dramatic demonstrations of the vastness of the cosmos.

Confirm before you go that the observatory will be open!

The public viewing programs at Foothill are free of charge and are open to guests of all ages. Please note that the observatory is closed when the weather is cloudy. Also note that visitor parking permits are available from the machines in the parking lots for $2.00.

For more information on Evening/Weekend Programs email: cohndiana@foothill.edu or call (650) 949-7711

Explore Pepperwood, Contribute to Science with your Smart Phone
Saturday, 02/18/12, 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Pepperwood Preserve, 2130 Pepperwood Preserve Rd, Santa Rosa, CA 95404
Join us for a workshop to learn to discover and record plant and wildlife sightings in our local habitats at the Pepperwood Preserve.  Participants will be introduced to the iNaturalist.org, and learn how citizen scientists can contribute to a regional assessment of Bay Area biodiversity. This workshop is appropriate for participants 14 and older and registration is required. You do not need a smart phone to participate. To register or learn more contact Joel Cervantes, 591-9310, jcervantes@pepperwoodpreserve.org.

Record, share, and verify species observations at Pepperwood Preserve in this hands-on workshop. Participants will learn about Pepperwood’s Vital Signs Project on iNaturalist.org. They will then explore and collect information about the flora and fauna of Pepperwood with staff and other citizen scientists. After the workshop, participants will be able keep making observations and tracking them on-line, and share this data with scientists world-wide.

iNaturalist.org is a social network that enhances awareness of biodiversity and collects critical data for conservation planning. Participants record, share and verify observations to track species and promote exploration of the natural world. Users can access an illustrated biodiversity atlas of species from their region and have experts within the community review and verify uncertain observations.

Email: info@pepperwoodpreserve.org, Phone: (707) 591-9310

For more information, contact Joel Cervantes at jcervantes@pepperwoodpreserve.org.

The Sustainable Presidio Park
Sunday, 02/19/12, 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Visitors Center, The Presidio, 105 Montgomery St, San Francisco, CA
How do we make the Presidio a sustainable national park? What does sustainability mean? Why couldn’t the Army sustain a base here in perpetuity?

We may ask more questions than we answer on this level, two-mile walk around the heart of the Presidio, but we’ll sure have fun!

Meet Ranger James Osborne and special guests at the temporary Visitor Center, 105 Montgomery St. at Lincoln Boulevard.


California Native Plants in a Managed Landscape
Wednesday, 02/22/12, Starts at 6:00 PM
San Francisco Public Library, 100 Larkin St, San Francisco, CA 94102
On weekend walks through the natural landscapes of the Bay Area, Alan Good and his team at the California Academy of Sciences find inspiration from the efficient design of the botanical world that surrounds us. This inspiration leads to a dynamic, native living exhibit on the roof and grounds surrounding the now Double Platinum LEED Certified Academy. Join us for a multimedia presentation about California Native Plants and the best operating practices for a managed landscape, which you may even be able to use to help sprout the gardens around your own homes and businesses.

Speaker: Alan Good, Landscape Exhibit Supervisor, California Academy of Sciences

Please Reserve a Space Online or call 415-379-8000


Accepting the Absurd: How Skepticism is Revealing the Nature of the Universe
Wednesday, 02/22/12, Starts at 7:00 PM
Fiddler’s Green, 333 El Camino Real, Millbrae, CA
Our current understanding of the universe incorporates ideas that seem absurd: Space is expanding and accelerating. Most of the “stuff” of the universe isn’t the protons and neutrons that a generation was taught to believe.

Why does science take these things seriously? This talk will explain the evidence and thought process that have forced a fundamental re-examination of our understanding of the nature of our universe. The result is both strange and deeply satisfying.

About the Speaker: Leonard Tramiel is Coordinator of the Center for Inquiry (CFI) San Francisco, is on the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI) Executive Council, and holds a PhD in Physics from Columbia University. He is a retired hi-tech executive with a deep interest in science, science education, and public attitudes toward science.

Skeptics in the Pub, West Bay, Fiddlers Green, Millbrae

If ye value critical thinking, and if ye scorn the film-flam man, and if ye drink, drink with us, your friends. If ye shun the brewer’s art, at least help us lay waste to bangers & mash!

Skeptics in the Pub is a monthly meeting for discussion of topics of science, reason, and skepticism.  Sometimes there will be a planned talk sometimes it is a group of like minded people informally discussing the latest in science or pseudoscience.

Fiddlers Green is a 10 minute stroll from the Millbrae BART & Caltrain station. [Click for Map]

For more information, email admin@baskeptics.org

Exploring 7 Billion: Population, Inequities, and our Changing Climate
Thursday, 02/23/12, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Ecology Center, 2530 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley, CA 94702
In late October, 2011, Earth became home to 7 billion people. For every one person alive at the turn of the 20th Century when many of our grandparents were children, there are now more than four. The world’s resources are not growing in step with humans. Our dramatic resource exploitation has profound implications for our climate and for human health. But larger family sizes don’t always correlate with greater resource consumption: a child born in the U.S. will be responsible for almost seven times the carbon emissions of a child born in China and 168 times the impact of a child born in Bangladesh.

Join experts from the Institute for Population Studies (IPS), Global Footprint Network, and Earth Island Institute as we explore the complex and critical, yet often not discussed, intersection of population growth and climate change and the effects both have on human health, women’s rights, and the social and economic issues we face globally and locally.

We’ll begin with a screening of the internationally acclaimed, award winning film, “Mother: Caring for 7 Billion” (www.motherthefilm.com), and follow with a panel and audience discussion.

Vanishing Birds of the Phillipines
Thursday, 02/23/12, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
The Bone Room, 1573 Solano Ave, Berkeley, CA 94707
The Bone Room Presents current featured artist, David Tomb, will speak about his artwork and its connection with the Phillipines Eagle Foundation and conservation group Jeepney Projects Worldwide.

Science at the Theater: Extreme Science
Monday, 02/27/12, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Berkeley Repertory Theater, 2025 Adisson St, Berkeley, CA 94704
Neutrino hunting in Antarctica, The world’s most powerful mictoscope, and Microbes that love extremes.

Structural Biology of Viruses
Tuesday, 02/28/12, 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Stanford University, James H. Clark Center, Auditorium, Stanford, CA 94305
Stephen C. Harrison, Ph.D., will be giving the 41st Annual Linus Pauling lecture entitled “Structural Biology of Viruses”.

Physical Predictions in the Quantum Multiverse
Tuesday, 02/28/12, 7:15 PM – 9:15 PM
Mount Diablo Astronomical Society, Concord Police Association Facility, 5060 Avila Rd, Concord, CA 94520
Where particle physics and cosmology meet, and the implications regarding the nature of the universe.
Speaker: Professor Yasunori Nomura, UC Berkeley


Written by Eric Lewis

Eric Lewis

Eris Lewis is high school area science support in the San Francisco Unified School District LEAD office.

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California Science Test Academy for Educators

Posted: Thursday, February 15th, 2018

California Science Test Academy for Educators

To support implementation of the California Science Test (CAST), the California Department of Education is partnering with Educational Testing Service and WestEd to offer a one-day CAST Academy for local educational agency (LEA) science educators, to be presented at three locations in California from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. As an alternative to traveling, LEA teams can participate virtually via WebEx on one of the dates listed below.

The dates and locations for the CAST Academy are as follows:

  • Monday, April 23, 2018—Sacramento
  • Wednesday, April 25, 2018—Fresno
  • Thursday, April 26, 2018—Irvine

The CAST Academy will help participants develop a deeper understanding of the assessment design and expectations of the CAST. The academy also will provide information and activities designed to assist educators in their implementation of the California Next Generation Science Standards and three-dimensional learning to help them gain an understanding of how these new science assessment item types can inform teaching and learning. The CAST Academy dates above are intended for school and district science instructional leaders, including teacher leaders, teacher trainers, and instructional coaches. Additional trainings will be offered at a later date specifically for county staff. In addition, curriculum, professional development, and assessment leaders would benefit from this training.

A $100 registration fee will be charged for each person attending the in-person training. Each virtual team participating via WebEx will be charged $100 for up to 10 participants through one access point. Each workshop will have the capacity to accommodate a maximum of 50 virtual teams. Each virtual team will need to designate a lead, who is responsible for organizing the group locally. Registration and payment must be completed online at http://www.cvent.com/d/6tqg8k.

For more information regarding the CAST Academy, please contact Elizabeth Dilke, Program Coordinator, Educational Testing Service, by phone at 916-403-2407 or by e‑mail at caasppworkshops@ets.org.

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.

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!

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!

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.



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.