January/February 2018 – Vol. 31 No. 2

Region 2 News and Events

Posted: Friday, April 1st, 2011

by Eric Lewis

It’s been another fantastic time for us in our region.  The NSTA conference in San Francisco just finished up and science educators from throughout California, in addition to the rest of the U.S., were joined with science educators from China, Chile and other countries from around the world.  Generally, the conference was really well received, though I personally, was both frustrated and pleased that we had so many folks attending from California that were not members of CSTA. (The pleased part was that many folks signed up to join CSTA during the convention–including teachers from out of state!)

There are a lot of great opportunities happening throughout our region in the coming months.  Besides PD opportunities during the school year, there are opportunities for summer learning as well.   Be sure to look over prior months’ information too, as there are plenty of resources that are still valid.

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 e-mail me directly so that I can present your questions and concerns to the CSTA board as a whole.

For those of you whose spring breaks are approaching, I hope you have a great one.  I look forward to seeing you all down in Pasadena for our next CSTA conference!

All my best, Eric Lewis, lewise2@sfusd.edu

Romberg Tiburon Center for Environmental Studies

San Francisco State University

Please join us for our Spring 2011 Estuary Ecology Day, co-sponsored by Romberg Tiburon Center and the SF Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve.
When: Saturday, April 9, 2011, 8:30 am -4:30 pm
Where: Romberg Tiburon Center, 3150 Paradise Drive, Tiburon, CA 94920
What: “Invasive Species: What Can We Learn From Them?”

  • Talks by local research scientists on current research, related classroom, lab, and/or field activities

Who: Co-sponsored by RTC and SF Bay NERR

  • Featuring talks by Dr. Lindsay Sullivan on the effect of invasive zooplankton on local food webs
  • Graduate student Autumn Cleave on invasive species in local wetlands
  • And more to be announced

Why: To learn about the latest research on introduced species in San Francisco Bay, and explore ways to involve students in local research and eradication efforts.

For more information and to register, please call (415) 338-­‑3757, or email erinb@rtc.sfsu.edu.

The Watershed Project
Saturday, April 2, 9:00 am-4: oo pm, McKinley Elementary School, 1025 14th Street, San Francisco

Join the Watershed Project for a FREE water-wise gardening workshop for San Francisco educators, garden coordinators and parents. Participants will learn how to sustain your school garden by conserving water and eliminating pests without harmful chemicals. You’ll learn about activities to share with students about bugs, storm water pollution prevention and integrative pest management as well as water conservation and designing a garden to maximize water efficiency. Free, organic lunch included so reserve your space today. Featured presentations include Rainwater Harvesting Systems by Kat Sawyer, Tap the Sky Project and Low Impact Design Projects, Matt Freiberg, Greening Urban Watersheds. Registration: Please send an email to Katy@thewatershedproject.org or call (510) 269-7TWP.

Golden Gate Audubon

Birdathon Takes Off
On April1 the Birdathon pledge website will be live. Be sure to sign up to take part in Birdathon 2011. All you have to do is go to www.goldengateaudubon.org and click on the Birdathon link. The new pledge system will let you put up photos and personal birding information, e-mail friends, and record your progress. It’s truly easy to send out e-mails from the site and you will be surprised at how many people will support your birding efforts. Prizes for top fundraisers include wonderful vacations and a $250 gift certificate to REI, among others. All proceeds benefit Golden Gate Audubon conservation and children’s education programs. Also be sure to check the March/April GULL for a great list of dedicated Birdathon field trips. You can organize your own trip or simply sign up for one already planned. Then ask your friends, family, work colleagues, and others to support your bird counting. Details are in the GULL. Full information, with checklists and rules, is on the website. You can also request a paper packet by calling 510-843-2222. Simply leave your name and mailing address and mention Birdathon.

Upcoming Classes:
Birds of the Sierra – I: Thursday, June 9, 3:00 p.m. through Sunday, June 12 at noon.

Birds of the Sierra – II: Thursday, June 16, 3:00 p.m. through Sunday, June 19 at noon.
Click here for details and on-line registration.

Lights Out for Birds
Now through May 31, 2011 is the spring migration.  Help birds, save natural resources, and cut energy costs by turning off unnecessary lights at night or closing window coverings.  If you are business owner, learn how to participate by contacting mlynes@goldengateuaudubon.org.

Berkeley Speaker Series
Thursday, April 21 at the Northbrae Community Church at 941 the Alameda, Bob Lewis is coming to discuss “The Top and Bottom of Central America”. 7:00 pm refreshments, 7:30 pm program.  For more information, click here.

Urban Watershed Stewardship Grant Program, Spring 2011 Cycle
The SFPUC’s Urban Watershed Management Program has partnered with San Francisco’s Community Challenge Grant Program to offer grants for community-based projects which help manage the city’s storm water using green infrastructure. The grants are based on the idea that small actions by San Francisco community members can add up to large benefits for San Francisco’s watersheds and sewer infrastructure. The grants support the planning, construction, and maintenance of low impact design (LID) based storm water management facilities. Projects harvest rainwater, remove impervious surfaces, or implement other green infrastructure like bioswales and rain gardens. In addition to managing storm water, projects beautify neighborhoods, provide recreational opportunities, and educate residents about the city’s water and wastewater systems.

Critical dates for the Spring 2011 grant cycle are listed below:
Grant Cycle Opens: Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Grant Application Deadline: Wednesday, April 6, 2011

More information is available at http://www.sfgsa.org/index.aspx?page=4264.

Give Your Students the Universe: Bring an Astronomer Into Your Classroom
Project ASTRO pairs Bay Area teachers in grades three—nine with astronomers who have a keen interest in sharing the wonders of astronomy with students. Together, partners attend a free 2-day summer workshop on August 12 – 13, 2011 to learn hands-on, inquiry-based astronomy activities.  Get great stuff for your classroom including The Universe at Your Fingertips 2.0 (a large collection of resources for teaching astronomy on a DVD-ROM), posters, NASA goodies, a Galileoscope (a telescope perfect for classroom use), and more. The application deadline is May 23, 2011.
For more information and to apply, please visit: http://www.astrosociety.org/education/astro/bayarea/teacher.html.

June 6-10, 2011

San Francisco, CA

Science in the Park

An exciting, week-long teacher workshop presented by the San Francisco Botanical Garden Society and the California Academy of Sciences. Also featuring the de Young Fine Arts Museum. Take the time to look up and look down in Golden Gate Park this summer! Join the us with the to gain the tools, techniques and confidence to explore the outside world with your students. In this week-long workshop you’ll learn about ecological roles of organisms as you record and reflect on your experiences using a simple but significant tool—the science journal. Discoveries will begin with looking up and looking down in the natural areas in Golden Gate Park. This standards-aligned workshop will explore investigation skills such as: observation, investigation, interpretation, critical thinking, and creativity through the use of nature journals. Topics covered include ecology of the park and the plant and animal interactions found in our local environment. The workshop is designed to make science teaching more exciting and accessible for kindergarten through fifth grade teachers. Click here to download an application. Application deadline: May 1, 2011.

June 26-July 1, 2011

July 11-15, 2011

July 25-29, 2011 and

July 31-August 5, 2011

Monterey, CA

Monterey Bay Aquarium Teacher Programs

The Monterey Bay Aquarium will be hosting four institutes for teams of full-time classroom teachers this summer.
These free, grade-specific, week-long professional development opportunities use activities that are aligned with national and California state
science content standards, as well as Ocean Literacy principles. Teachers leave with activities, resources and materials for their classrooms.

  • Splash Zone Teacher Institute for Head Start and K-2 teachers, June 26-July 1, 2011 . The deadline
    to apply is March 25, 2011.
  • Coastal Systems Teacher Institute for grades 3-5, July 31-August 5, 2011 Both elementary institutes are open to teachers nationwide and are residential with meals and housing at Stevenson School in Pebble Beach, CA: The deadline to apply is March 25, 2011.
  • Project Based Science Institute for grades 6-8, July 11-15, 2011. The deadline to apply is April 8, 2011.
  • Connecting Marine Science for grades 9-12, July 25-29, 2011. The deadline to apply is April 8, 2011.

For details about all four teacher institutes and online applications, please visit Teacher Programs: www.montereybayaquarium.org.

August 12-13, 2011
Redwood City, CA
Project ASTRO Training Workshop

Project Astro is looking for 3rd–9th grade teachers to work with volunteer astronomers who have a keen interest in sharing the wonders of astronomy with students. Together, you and your astronomer partner attend a free 2-day
summer workshop to learn hands-on, inquiry-based astronomy activities designed to involve students in the excitement of scientific discovery. Project ASTRO Teacher applications are now being accepted for the 2011–2012 school year. The deadline is Friday, May 23rd and space is limited. All participants are required to attend a free 2-day workshop held Friday August 12 and Saturday August 13, 2011, at the San Mateo County Office of Education
in Redwood City. Teachers do not need to have any astronomy experience to participate, but should have an interest in offering astronomy and hands-on science in their classroom work. APPLY ONLINE by May 23: ww.astrosociety.org/education/astro/bayarea/teacher.html Contact Project ASTRO Coordinator: bayareaastro@astrosociety.org, or 415-337-1100, x 126.

Eris Lewis is high school area science support in the San Francisco Unified School District LEAD office and is CSTA region 2 director.

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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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.

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.