January/February 2017 – Vol. 29 No. 4

Regional Update: Region 4 – Welcome, 2013!

Posted: Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

by Jeanine Wulfenstein

With the start of the New Year, Region 4 is bustling with preparations in anticipation of the next draft release of the NGSS and the impending implementation of Common Core Standards and Smarter Balanced Assessments.  This shift in pedagogy and emphasis will mean changes in the way we do business in the classroom. 

If you are interested in being an instructional leader to find out more about what is happening and what this means for teachers, the Riverside County Office of Education (RCOE) is offering a one day workshop on January 22, 2013 fro 8:30 – 3:30 to introduce what the Common Core Standards mean for Science and History-Social Science instruction across our state.

The Riverside County office of Education (RCOE) is also holding a collaborative meeting for all County Science Leaders.  On February 12, 2013 from 9:00 am to 2:00pm, science leaders from across the county will come together to learn about science assessment, data, available grants, instructional materials, research-based strategies, California Department of Education updates, upcoming events, and hands-on activities.  Participants will have an opportunity to participate in discussions and networking about STEM initiatives, the Next Generation Science Standards, and Common Core Standards.  For additional information contact Yamileth Shimojyo (cces@rcoe.us).

For those needing assistance and support in coordinating a science fair, RCOE is holding a Science Fair Coordinators meeting Thursday January 17, 2013 at 4:00pm.

For the outdoor enthusiast, the Orange County Department of Education is offering a celebration of World Wetlands Day at Upper Newport Bay at the Muth Center in Newport Beach on February 2, 2013.  World Wetlands day helps raise public awareness of the value and benefits of wetlands around the world.  For more information contact: http://ito.ocde.us/home.htm or 714-708-3885.

The Orange County Department of Education is offering even more outdoor fun at the Get Outdoors! Program at Peters Canyon Regional Park located in Orange on January 19, 2013 from 12:00 to 3:00 pm.  Enjoy outdoor activities geared to inspire your family to spend more time outside.  This program includes easy Naturalist led hikes, and crafts.  For more information contact http://ito.ocde.us/home.htm or 714-708-3885.

To remain current on the latest research, Science Educators in the San Diego region are invited to attend the San Diego Science Alliance Perspectives on Science Lecture series located at Point Loma Nazarene University.  Refreshments begin at 4:30 p.m. followed by a formal scientific presentation beginning at 5:00 p.m. Upcoming dates and topics include; The HIV Pandemic: Fighting AIDS in San Diego.  Featuring Dr. Douglas Richman (Professor of Pathology and Medicine and Director of the Center for AIDS Research, UC San Diego, Florence Seeley Riford Chair in AIDS Research, Staff Physician at the VA San Diego Healthcare System) on February 5, 2012.  The Early History of Life: A Solution to Darwin’s Dilemma on January 15, 2013.  The guest speaker will be Dr. J. William “Bill” Schopf, (Professor of Paleobiology & Director of IGPP CSEOL University of California, Los Angeles.)

For additional information on this monthly seminar series for science teachers, visit http://www.pointloma.edu/experience/academics/schools-departments/department-biology/science-education-programs/perspectives-science.

Written by Jeanine Wulfenstein

Jeanine Wulfenstein

Jeanine Wulfenstein teaches science at Gardner Middle School and is the CSTA Treasurer. You can reach her by emailing jwulfenstein@tvusd.k12.ca.us.

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STEM Conference Hosted by CMSESMC

Posted: Saturday, January 14th, 2017

The Council of Math/Science Educators of San Mateo County will be hosting the 41st annual STEM Conference this February 4, 2017 at the San Mateo County Office of Education. This STEM Conference is the place to get lots of new lessons and ideas to use in your classroom. There will be over twenty-five workshops and a variety of exhibitors that provide participants with a wide range of practical and realistic ideas and resources to use in their science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs from Pre-K to grade 12. With California’s adoption of the Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards, we are dedicated to ensuring that we prepare our teachers to take on these educational policies.

Teachers, administrators, and parents are invited to explore the many exciting aspects of STEM education and learn about and discuss the latest news, information, and issues. This is also an opportunity to network with colleagues who can assist you in building your programs and meet new friends that share your interests and love of teaching. Register online today!

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.

Submit Your NGSS Lessons and Units Today!

Posted: Friday, January 13th, 2017

Achieve has launched and is facilitating an EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science–a group of expert reviewers who will evaluate the quality and alignment of lessons and units to the standards–in an effort to identify and shine a spotlight on emerging high-quality lesson and unit plans designed for the NGSS.

If you or your state, district, school, or organization has designed NGSS-aligned instructional materials, please consider submitting these in order to help provide educators across the country with various models and templates of high-quality lesson and unit plans. 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.

Opportunity for High School Students – Los Angeles County

Posted: Friday, January 13th, 2017

An upcoming Perry Outreach Program on Saturday, April 22, 2017 at the Orthopaedic Institute for Children in Los Angeles, CA. The Perry Outreach Program is a free, one-day, hands-on experience for high school and college-aged women who are interested in pursuing careers in medicine and engineering. Students will hear from women leaders in these fields and try it for themselves by performing mock orthopaedic surgeries and biomechanics experiments. 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.

Science Education Policy Update

Posted: Friday, January 13th, 2017

by Jessica Sawko

January 2017 has proven to be a very busy month for science education policy and CA NGSS implementation activities. CSTA has been and will be there every step of the way, seeking and enacting all options to support high-quality science education and the successful implementation of CA NGSS.

California Department of Education/U.S. Department of Education Science Double-Testing Waiver Hearing

The year started with California Department of Education’s (CDE) hearing with the U.S. Department of Education conducted via WebEx on January 6, 2017. This hearing was the final step in California’s efforts to secure a waiver from the federal government in order to discontinue administration of the old CST and suspension of the reporting of student test scores on a science assessment for two years. As reported by EdSource, the U.S. Department of Education representative, Ann Whalen, a senior adviser to U.S. Secretary John King Jr., committed to making her final ruling “very shortly.” Deputy Superintendent Keric Ashley presented on behalf of CDE during the hearing and did an excellent job describing the broad-based support for this waiver in California, the rationale for the waiver, and California’s commitment to the successful implementation of a new high-quality science assessment. As previously reported, California is moving forward with its plans to administer a census pilot assessments this spring. The testing window is set to open on March 20, 2017. For more information visit New CA Science Test: What You Should Know.

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Written by Jessica Sawko

Jessica Sawko

Jessica Sawko is CSTA’s Executive Director.

NSTA Los Angeles Conference Features Many CA Science Leaders

Posted: Friday, January 13th, 2017

by Jessica Sawko

The early-bird registration rates for the 65th NSTA National Conference on Science Education in Los Angeles is just days away (ends Feb. 3). And as the early-registration deadline approaches excitement is building for what is anticipated to be the largest gathering of science educators (both California and nationwide) – with attendance expected to reach 10,000 or more. If you have never had the pleasure of attending the NSTA National Conference, I recommend you visit their website with tips for newcomers that describe the various components of the event. A conference preview is also available for download. Learn More…

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Written by Jessica Sawko

Jessica Sawko

Jessica Sawko is CSTA’s Executive Director.