May/June 2017 – Vol. 29 No. 7

Region 1, April 2014

Posted: Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

by David Pummill and Marian Murphy-Shaw

As a science educator, or supporter of science education, this article has a list of some events and updates you may want to get on your calendar now! Consider looking at what you can align your resources to support this spring, summer, and next fall. With NGSS science is coming to life in CA we hope you are as excited as we are not to miss the fun!

  • Chico State 14th Annual Science Teaching SymposiumApril 26 from 8:30-3:30, from attached or contact the CMSE at CSU Chico. Register by April 22!
  • California Science Teacher’s Association has some great membership deals for new teachers, current members and those attending the December joint conference with NSTA!
  • First and Second Year Teachers: Get two years’ CSTA membership for the price of one! Join CSTA at the regular member rate of $50 and get your second year of membership for free! We must receive verification of your status as a new (first or second year) teacher, signed by your principal or BTSA provider. Download a membership form and send it in to CSTA along with your verification. Click here for a sample verification form.
  • Current Members: Get three, get one free. Current CSTA members who bring in three new members will get their following year’s membership free! Introduce your colleagues to the benefits of belonging to their professional organization and get a year’s free membership in the bargain. Send in memberships for three individuals who are not and have not been CSTA members for at least three years; new memberships must be submitted at the same time. Download this membership form for your colleagues (don’t forget to fill in your name at the bottom!) and send all three in at the same time.
  • NEW for 2014: Joint 1-Year NSTA/CSTA Membership: $105 (a $125 value) To celebrate the 2014 NSTA Area Conference in Long Beach in Collaboration with CSTA (join on the NSTA website – look under “Membership Type”, it is the last option) This is a limited time offer only available in 2014 and only via the NSTA website.
  • Second Annual CA STEM Symposium: September 22-23, 2014 at the San Diego Convention Center. Save the date.
  • CSTA is partnering with the National Science Teachers Association to produce the 2014 NSTA Long Beach Area Conference – in Collaboration with CSTA! December 4-6 at the Long Beach Convention Center. Conference Strands for 2014 are:

• #NGSS #Implementation
• Science: The Gateway to Common Core State Standards
• STEM Classrooms: Anytime/Anyplace/Anywhere

Additional Region 1 Events:

CREEC Student Competitions and Contests
April 15, 2014: Nominate a Young Environmental Hero for a $5,000 Barron Prize.Do you know a young person who is doing great things to help other people or the planet? Nominate him or her for the 2014 Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes! The Barron Prize celebrates inspiring, public-spirited young people (ages 8–18) who have made a significant positive difference to people and our environment. Each year, 10 to 15 winners each receive a $5,000 cash award to support their service work or higher education. Half of each year’s winners are chosen for their work to protect the environment. Deadline: April 15, 2014

May 30, 2014: Green Living Project: Student File Project
GLP Films has launched the 2014 Student Film Project! Students are encouraged to document and submit unique and compelling short films (5 minutes or less) about local or global sustainability-related projects. Winning films will be screened at GLP events this year! Winners also receive prize packages valued at $500 from Mountainsmith, The North Face, Think Tank Photo, Freewaters, Pura Vida, Relan and more. The contest is open to 6th grade through graduate level students. Regular Deadline: May 30, 2014

May 3, 2014: NEXT GENERATION SCIENCE SATURDAY
When: May 3, 2014 – 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Where: Sacramento State Union
Cost: $90 (after April 28 late registration is $99)
Included: Three Workshops, Workshop Materials,
Breakfast, Lunch, 6 Professional Development Hours
Download A Super SIRC Flyer
Download a Registration Form

Marian Murphy-Shaw is the student services director at Siskiyou County Office of Education and is CSTA’s secretary.

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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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.

Goodbye Outgoing and Welcome Incoming CSTA Board Members

Posted: Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

Jill Grace

Jill Grace, CSTA President, 2017-2019

On July 1, 2017 five CSTA members concluded their service and four new board members joined the ranks of the CSTA Board of Directors. CSTA is so grateful for all the volunteer board of directors who contribute hours upon hours of time and energy to advance the work of the association. At the June 3 board meeting, CSTA was able to say goodbye to the outgoing board members and welcome the incoming members.

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

  • Laura Henriques (President-Elect: 2011 – 2013, President: 2013 – 2015, Past President: 2015 – 2017)
  • Valerie Joyner (Region 1 Director: 2009 – 2013, Primary Director: 2013 – 2017)
  • Mary Whaley (Informal Science Education Director: 2013 – 2017)
  • Sue Campbell (Middle School/Jr. High Director: 2015 – 2017)
  • Marcus Tessier (2-Year College Director: 2015 – 2017)

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.

Finding My Student’s Motivation of Learning Through Engineering Tasks

Posted: Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

by Huda Ali Gubary and Susheela Nath

It’s 8:02 and the bell rings. My students’ walk in and pick up an entry ticket based on yesterday’s lesson and homework. My countdown starts for students to begin…3, 2, 1. Ten students are on task and diligently completing the work, twenty are off task with behaviors ranging from talking up a storm with their neighbors to silently staring off into space. This was the start of my classes, more often than not. My students rarely showed the enthusiasm for a class that I had eagerly prepared for. I spent so much time searching for ways to get my students excited about the concepts they were learning. I wanted them to feel a connection to the lessons and come into my class motivated about what they were going to learn next. I would ask myself how I could make my class memorable where the kids were in the driver’s seat of learning. Incorporating engineering made this possible. 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.

State Schools Chief Tom Torlakson Unveils Updated Recommended Literature List

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.

“The books our students read help broaden their perspectives, enhance their knowledge, and fire their imaginations,” Torlakson said. “The addition of these award-winning titles represents the state’s continued commitment to the interests and engagement of California’s young readers.”

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…

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.

Teaching Science in the Time of Alternative Facts – Why NGSS Can Help (somewhat)

Posted: Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

by Peter A’Hearn

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.