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Houston 22

National Conference • Mar. 31 - Apr. 3


We are no longer accepting proposals for this conference.


Developing Scientific Literacy in the Classroom

Regardless of cultural, ethnic, or socioeconomic background; disabilities; gender; or age, all students should have the opportunity to attain high levels of scientific literacy. In order to do so, educators need to create a safe and comfortable environment in which students can ask questions and share answers from their own everyday life and living experiences. Encouraging students to describe, explain, and predict natural phenomena will facilitate learning opportunities that integrate science and literacy skill development. Expanding on these skills during a student’s early years will better support that student’s development of scientific literacy into adulthood. This strand will explore ways that teachers can help students participate in society’s science conversations by using real-world applications of science instruction and encouraging students to share their own stories and relevant situations.

Strategies for Creating Inclusive Science Classrooms

All students benefit from an inclusive environment. While creating an inclusive science classroom may seem challenging, it can be done in a way that supports engagement, challenges, and interaction among all learners, regardless of differences. Creating an accessible learning classroom where all students work together is a necessary first step toward a more inclusive experience. Inclusive science classrooms acknowledge experiences of students from different backgrounds, are void of stereotypes that can marginalize students, and encourage alternative perspectives and ideas while promoting scientific understanding.

Using Science Inquiry to Facilitate Learning for Multilingual Learners

The language of science can be confusing for English language learners because many words that we use in everyday life have different meanings from the way they are used in science. To provide equitable opportunities for all students to engage in the science classroom, teachers must be aware of their students’ proficiency levels and challenges with the English language. More importantly, teachers must measure that knowledge against the language demands of the science lessons in order to best support and engage those students during instruction. How can science inquiry and sensemaking be used by educators to better facilitate learning as multilingual learners develop a conceptual understanding of science and science language? 

Promoting Effective Assessments in the STEM Classroom

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin

Most of us are aware that learning is an integral part of our life. However, classroom learning is a daunting process and requires continuous involvement from all parties to be successful. In order to generate good results, the learning process requires regular review and verification by both the student and teacher. 

STEM assessments should also be viewed as a process. No one test should be used to demonstrate a complete summary of a student’s academic achievement. Rather, a series of various strategies should be implemented to assess student learning. While there are various forms of assessment used for this verification, it is important to remember that if an educator cannot easily and readily administer and score an assessment, it will likely not be an effective tool. Other considerations for effective assessment strategies include reliability, validity, inclusivity, objectivity, and practicality. This strand will explore effective assessment tools and resources as well as what makes an assessment tool effective.

Developing Accountability Systems for Expanding STEM Participation

In order to widen students’ participation and interest in STEM, educators need to actively engage, recruit, and nurture a more inclusive environment where all students are learning, growing, and becoming more proficient at solving the problems they will face as adults. However, effective broadening participation cannot be realized without cultural and institutional change. As a community of educators, we must develop accountability for reducing barriers for all—especially those in underrepresented groups and those with disabilities—to ensure an educational system that is dedicated to create STEM pathways throughout a students’ academic career, preK–16+.

This is a critical step toward achieving a STEM workforce that reflects and celebrates the diversity of our society. This strand will share tools that will develop and implement accountability systems for expanding students’ participation and successes in STEM.




Proposals will be evaluated on the extent that they:

  • Are grounded in cultural competency (promote equity, demonstrate the value of diversity, and address the impact of bias).

  • Support or identify specific goals from the NRC Framework, NGSS, or state standards.

  • Support three-dimensional teaching and learning.

  • Are based on current and available research and issues in science and STEM education.

  • Engage session participants through activities or discussion.

  • Include examples of assessments (formative and summative).

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