March/April 2017 – Vol. 29 No. 6

Region 2 – News and Events for October 2013

Posted: Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

by Eric Lewis

I hope that your school year has been off to a great start. I also hope that you can take advantage of some of the great science opportunities in our region this month!

The Next Generation Science Standards have arrived in California and now we need to get to work. In my district, as I’m sure is true in yours, there is a mixed response to the NGSS from fanatical excitement to tempered indifference. I myself think that these standards are going to be amazing not only because they emphasize a whole different kind of science teaching and learning, but also because they connect so wonderfully to the CA Common Core Standards in ELA and Mathematics. Of course, I think in order to really make the changes that we want in education, we’re going to need to support a different structure for schools – especially high schools. We will need more time to work with our colleagues in other disciplines to ensure that we’re utilizing the tools provided in our standards. How else will we be able to weave these standards together? I hope that we see some new innovations in school structures over the next few years to help teachers to meet the challenges and opportunities that these new standards provide. 

Additionally, many of us are watching carefully to see how the assessments for these new standards come to fruition. Some of us remember the Golden State Exams used from 1983 to 2003 – they seemed to be aligned to the kinds of performance expectations that the NGSS encourage. When will these new assessments arrive in CA? Will they be online like the other content area standards’ assessments? Will we have sufficient time with these new standards before we are assessed on them? We are excited to find out!

I do hope that I’ll get to see you at this year’s Education Conference in Palm Springs later this month. Please let me know if there are things that you’d like to add to our Region’s offerings. Don’t forget to 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.

Eric Lewis, lewise2@sfusd.edu

There are many, many science opportunities in the Bay Area. Please visit here to see a year round calendar of events in our area. Some big events to remember:

Free Entry Days at:

Bay Area Discovery Museum, First Wednesday of the month

UC Botanical Gardens, First Thursday of the month

Oakland Museum of California, First Sunday of the month

California Academy of Sciences, Free days on selected Sundays: December 8th

Exploratorium, Free Days, Selected days: October 13th

 

Star Parties:

Houge Park Star Party, October 11th and 25th

San Mateo County Astronomical Society Star Party, October 5th and 26th

 

Super-cool science parties:

Night Life, Thursdays, 6-10 pm, at the California Academy of Sciences

After Dark, First Thursday of the month, 6-10 pm, at the Exploratorium

 

Highlighted Event/s in October:

October LASER at UC Berkeley

Wednesday, 10/09/13, 6:30 PM – 9:00 PM

Barrows Hall room 110, UC Berkeley, Berkeley

6:30-6:55: Zann Gill, (former NASA scientist) on “Resolving Prediction’s Paradox: collaborative intelligence ecosystems.”

6:55-7:20: Jennifer Parker (UC Santa Cruz) on “Down to earth: Art, Astronomy and Physics”

7:20-7:40: 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.

7:40-8:05: Cheryl Leonard (Composer) on “Music from High Latitudes”

8:05-8:30: Wayne Vitale (Gamelan Sekar Jaya) on “Between Ancient Texts and Three Screens”

8:30pm-9:00pm: Discussions, networking – You can mingle with the speakers and the audience

For more information, visit their website at http://www.leonardo.info/isast/laser.html

East Bay Mini Maker Faire 2013

Sunday, October 20, 2013, 10:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M.

Park Day School, 360 42nd Street, Oakland

What and why: A Maker Faire is about celebrating learning and doing – not the finished and perfect end product. It’s a place to share what we’re learning with others, and celebrate the fun and freedom of being an amateur.

Featuring both established and emerging local “makers,” the East Bay Mini Maker Faire is a family-friendly celebration coming to Oakland for its fourth year on Sunday, October 20, 2013. It will feature rockets and robots, digital fabrication, DIY science and technology, urban farming and sustainability, alternative energy, bicycles, unique hand-made crafts, music and local food, and educational workshops and installations.

The East Bay Mini Maker Faire follows the “big” Maker Faire model of celebrating invention, creativity, and resourcefulness, but is smaller in scale (170 makers vs. 900 makers; 5,000 people on one day vs. 65,000) and will showcase the wonders of Alameda and Contra Costa counties and beyond!

Tickets range from $10-$20 depending on when you purchase (so purchase early!).

For more information contact Sabrina Merlo at info@ebmakerfaire.com, call 510.325.5178, or visit their website at http://ebmakerfaire.wordpress.com/

For additional events in our region, please reference the VERY comprehensive calendar compiled by the Bay Area Science Festival. 

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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