November/December 2017 – Vol. 30 No. 2

Your Wait Is Over!

Posted: Wednesday, June 1st, 2011

by Jessica Sawko

Registration is now open and on-line for the 20th annual California Science Education Conference. Celebrate the end of the school year by buying yourself the best gift any science teacher could ask for, registration for the only California science standards-aligned professional development conference designed by and for California Science educators. The conference will be held October 21 – 23, 2011 at the Pasadena Convention Center. Your three-day registration includes access to over 175 workshops; a series of fantastic focus speakers; evening events; the exhibit hall filled with resources, discounts, and freebies; and the opportunity to meet and collaborate with fellow science educators from all over the state.

Registering before August 1 can also save you money. CSTA members (paid through November 1, 2011 or later) receive the best rate possible, only $98 for a full registration. Nonmembers can join today and save $11 vs. registering at the nonmember rate. Click here for complete information regarding registration rates.

When your register for the conference, be sure to purchase a ticket for the Awards Breakfast: “A Breakfast with Food Sleuth Shirley Corriher – What’s on Your Table?” This year’s speaker is sure to entertain and educate you. People in airports recognize Shirley as the “Mad Scientist” on Good Eats TV show. She has appeared on many TV shows, even once on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live with Snoop Dog as her fry chef. For over 40 years, Shirley has solved cooking problems for everyone from home cooks, editors and writers, large companies like Pillsbury and Procter & Gamble, to Julia Child.

Cooking is chemistry, and Shirley Corriher makes it accessible. She explains everything you could ever want to know (and then some) about the chemical processes of eggs, fats, breads, sauces, and other foods. As an article in Food and Wine put it “If it’s about food and you want to know why, Shirley is the person to figure it out.” She is famous for the “protein hop” – an interpretive dance of sorts to demonstrate the molecular transformations that turn flour, eggs, and sugar into a cake. Tickets are just $25 and include a hot breakfast including one of Shirley’s favorite foods, eggs. For more about Shirley and to download her recipe for biscuits visit:  http://www.cascience.org/csta/conf_Corriher.asp.

Other ticketed events include Short Courses and Field Courses. Be sure to visit http://www.cascience.org/csta/conf_home11.asp for complete information. I look forward to seeing you in Pasadena.

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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Priority Features of NGSS-Aligned Instructional Materials

Posted: Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

Recommendations for Publishers, Reviewers, and Educators. The California Science Teachers Association and the science teachers associations of three other Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) west-coast states, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington, have co-authored a white paper on priority features of NGSS instructional materials. This is the first time our states have collaborated to convey a common vision on an issue of great importance for the implementation of the NGSS. We understand all too well that for meaningful shifts to happen and to support the full vision of the NGSS, strong K-12 Instructional materials are required. 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.

State Board Moves Forward Two Key Pieces Supporting CA NGSS Implementation

Posted: Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

by Jessica Sawko

CSTA President Jill Grace provides public comment at the November 8, 2017, California State Board of Education meeting.

On November 8, 2017, the California State Board of Education (SBE) took action on two items of import relating to the implementation of the California Next Generation Science Standards (CA NGSS). One item was relating to the California Science Test (CAST) and the other to instructional materials. CSTA provided both written and oral comments on both items along with providing input on what CSTA and many other advocates view as a critical component of our state’s emerging accountability system – student access to a broad course of study. 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.

NGSS – Early Attempts and Later Reflections from an Early Implementer Teacher

Posted: Thursday, November 23rd, 2017

by Christa Dunkel

  • There are so many acronyms! Where do I start?
  • What “baby step” should I take first? 
  • How can I make this happen in my elementary classroom?

All of these thoughts and more swam through my head over three years ago when I began my journey into NGSS. I was fresh from a week-long institute with the K-12 Alliance as part of the CA NGSS K-8 Early Implementation Initiative. Much of the week was spent on digging into the NGSS architecture – how the standards are set-up, how to read the standards, what each of the three dimensions meant. Now that I knew how to read them, I needed to figure out how to implement them into my classroom of 24 eight-year-olds. With some guidance from the K-12 Alliance leaders and my own district-level NGSS team, I began the process with some easy “baby steps.” 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.

CSTA Is Now Accepting Nominations for Board Members

Posted: Friday, November 17th, 2017

Current, incoming, and outgoing CSTA Board of Directors at June 3, 2017 meeting.

Updated 7:25 pm, Nov. 17, 2017

It’s that time of year when CSTA is looking for dedicated and qualified persons to fill the upcoming vacancies on its Board of Directors. This opportunity allows you to help shape the policy and determine the path that the Board will take in the new year. There are time and energy commitments, but that is far outweighed by the personal satisfaction of knowing that you are an integral part of an outstanding professional educational organization, dedicated to the support and guidance of California’s science teachers. You will also have the opportunity to help CSTA review and support legislation that benefits good science teaching and teachers.

Right now is an exciting time to be involved at the state level in the California Science Teachers Association. The CSTA Board of Directors is currently involved in implementing the Next Generations Science Standards and its strategic plan. If you are interested in serving on the CSTA Board of Directors, now is the time to submit your name for consideration. 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.

Expanding Your Definition of Informal Science Education

Posted: Wednesday, November 15th, 2017

by Lori Walsh

When deciding on a field trip, zoos, aquariums and science centers typically come to mind. These facilities offer students hands-on opportunities to make science observations using inquiry. Teachers can schedule standards aligned workshops or self-guided visits. If your students have already visited these facilities, you can broaden your options by exploring the larger world of Informal Science Education. Nature centers, non-profits, and environmental groups often also offer NGSS aligned programs in the natural setting. Your students can discover the local environment while making memorable experiences. Learn More…

Written by Lori Walsh

Lori Walsh

Lori Walsh is the Education/Operations Supervisor at SEA LIFE Aquarium at LEGOLAND California Resort and Informal Science Director for CSTA.