March/April 2017 – Vol. 29 No. 6

Region 1 News & Events – Featuring Guest Contributor

Posted: Monday, March 14th, 2016

by Marian Murphy-Shaw

In addition to what is coming up below is a guest article summarizing some of the great things happening in Tuolumne County. Lucky you if you have been part of these activities! If not, and you live in this part of Region 1 maybe there is something you want to look into finding out more about. It is always great to hear from sister CSTA members out there about happenings – please continue sending them to me at mshaw@siskiyoucoe.net.   

Trinity County Office of Education Mobile STEAM Team will visit Douglas City School on April 20, 2016 for an Evening STEAM Event for kids K-8.

Happenings in Tuolumne County

by Cathy Parker, Assistant Superintendent, Educational Services ,Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools

Tuolumne County continues to provide increased student and teacher support for STEM initiatives. The Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools Office hosted the 2nd Annual Global Cardboard Challenge, October 2015 with over 400 K-8 students and two high school teams participating. (http://www.tcsos.us/student-activities/global-cardboard-challenge/) STEM has spread to the most rural regions of Tuolumne County with the opening of a satellite campus of the InnovationLab (http://myinnovationlab.org/) at Tioga High that includes 3D printers, high end computers, and is managed primarily by students. This joint effort by the Tuolumne County Economic Development Authority is a great example of how private businesses can support STEM in our schools.

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Dinner with a Scientist (http://www.tcsos.us/dinner-with-a-scientist/) events were held in Amador/Calaveras counties on November 19 with approximately 60 students and 15 scientists, and in Tuolumne County on December 11 with approximately 120 students and 33 scientists.  Keynote speakers were Dr. Erin Naegle from Columbia College speaking about all of the tubing systems in the human body, and Dr. Debi Bolter of Modesto Junior College speaking about her work leading research on the Homo naledi fossil find in South Africa, respectively.  Women in STEM!

Our county office is working with school districts to help start up GATE programs.  At Sonora Elementary, once per month after school sessions are divided into two grade level groups, 3 to 5 and 6 to 8.  One grade level does math while the other does science/technology, then they switch the following month.

TOPS (Teaching Opportunities for Partners in Science) partners continue to visit elementary classrooms around Tuolumne County.

Our CaMSP grant STEM-TRACKS (http://www.tcsos.us/educational-services/stemtracks/) training continues with Unit Development Team meetings dominating the winter months. Culminating meeting on May 2 and Year Three Summer Intensive Institute from June 20 to 25.

HealthLitNow (http://healthlitnow.org/) has held several workshops with students in grades 7 to 9 to inform them about career opportunities in the healthcare field.  The workshops are composed of six engaging, non-didactic, NGSS focused stations that address multiple healthcare career opportunities. The stations include: neuroscience, heart and circulatory system, pulmonary system, diet, and ophthalmology.


The Forestry Institute for Teachers (FIT) is a multi-day residence workshop developed by the Northern California Society of American Foresters, University of California Cooperative Extension, Shasta County Office of Education, The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, and Project Learning Tree. The FIT Program is underwritten by a consortium of public and private sources. Since 1993, more than 2,300 teachers have graduated from the program. Apply online at http://www.forestryinstitute.org/apply.html. 2016 FIT Sessions:

  • June 12-18, Plumas County
  • June 19-25, Tuolumne County
  • June 26-July 2, Shasta County
  • July 10-16, Humboldt County

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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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.