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Week of January 28, 2008

Table of Contents

NSTA's Boston Conference is Fast Approaching

There’s still time to register for the National Conference on Science Education, March 26-30 in Boston. Register by February 8, the early bird deadline, and save!

In addition to professional development workshops, presentations, and symposia to enhance your teaching strategies, many of your favorite authors will be there to share their knowledge.

Join Bill Robertson, author of the Stop Faking It! series (Chemistry Basics, Energy, Force and Motion, Sound, Light, and Electricity and Magnetism), as he guides you in performing hands-on activities and answers questions based on his popular books. Choose from three diverse workshops on March 29! Robertson is a former college physics instructor, researcher in cognitive science, and developer of curricula for the Biological Sciences Curriculum Study and the U.S. Space Foundation.

Robertson will also conduct a special lesson at the NSTA booth entitled “How Do We Know Atoms Look the Way They Do?" on March 27 and 28 at 1:00 pm.

He is one of the many NSTA press authors who will present and/or sign books at the NSTA Science Store, including author Joy Hakim of The Story of Science series; Bill Ritz, who authored A Head Start on Science; Randy Bell, author of Technology in the Secondary Classroom; and many others. Register for the Boston conference here.

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U.S. Dept. of Education "Dashboards" Provide Important State Information

Using the large amount of data collected as the result of No Child Left Behind, the U.S. Department of Education has released two-page "dashboards," which provide a comprehensive overview of a state’s education system. Each dashboard, one for the nation and every state, includes statistics on National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) scores, graduation rates, schools making Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP), highly qualified teachers, high school graduation rates, parents taking advantage of choice and supplemental educational services, and more.

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Celebrate Darwin Day!

What are you doing to celebrate Darwin Day, February 12? The Institute for Humanist Studies (IHS) is an international educational nonprofit that promotes reason and humanity. IHS shares the vision of Darwin Day as a way to honor Charles Darwin, to promote understanding of evolution, and to provide a new global holiday that transcends separate cultures and religious traditions. The Darwin Day Celebration will continue to support, promote, and coordinate Darwin Day events organized around the world. Those interested in celebrating Darwin Day can visit the website for event ideas and guidelines.

Also, check out the ideas posted on Access Excellence, a cyber-education program from the National Health Museum, for ways to recognize Charles Darwin's birthday with your class. For example, high school biology teacher Rich Benz tells how to create an explorer’s "field bag" filled with things Darwin might have seen on his trip around the world on the H.M.S. Beagle. He also provides a Darwin classroom poster. Use the search function with the keyword "darwin" to find many other activities, such as "Darwin’s Obituary" or "Charles Darwin’s Hardware Shop."

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Register Now: Discounted Rates on Project 2061 Workshop

Do you want to learn more about Atlas of Science Literacy, Volume 2 and how to put it to use to improve curriculum, instruction, and assessment in your science program? AAAS Project 2061 is offering two sessions of its popular professional development workshop "Using Atlas of Science Literacy" in Washington, DC, in 2008: March 11-13 and October 15-17. Now is the time to register at low earlybird rates.

Designed for K-12 science teachers, curriculum specialists, and other educators, the workshop demonstrates how participants can use the conceptual strand maps in Atlas 1 and Atlas 2, along with other Project 2061 resources, to enhance their own understanding of science literacy and take a benchmarks-based approach to helping all students achieve literacy in science, mathematics, and technology. Atlas of Science Literacy is copublished by AAAS and NSTA.

For more details and a registration form, please visit the workshop information page. A limited number of scholarships are available, but don't delay. The scholarship application deadline for the March workshop is February 1, 2008.

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Comment on NSTA's Draft Position Statement on Aerospace Education

A team of science educators, leaders from aerospace science organizations, and representatives from the NSTA Aerospace Programs Advisory Board, have worked over recent months to develop a position statement on aerospace education. According to the statement, aerospace education “is an important component of comprehensive preK–12 science education programs,” and provides “compelling, powerful, and inherent opportunities to strengthen and support the teaching and learning of science, mathematics, and technology for students.”

As always, members are encouraged to read the statement and submit comments to the panel before it is submitted to the NSTA Board for adoption. Please take a minute and tell us what you think of this new statement. To view and comment, go to NSTA’s online Discussion Board and click on Post Reply. (Note: You must register to use the NSTA Discussion Board before posting comments.) Comments must be received by Monday, February 4.

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Get Small—Really Small—With Lab Out Loud

In the latest episode of NSTA's podcast Lab Out Loud, Dale Basler talks with physicist Don Lincoln of the DZero detector experiment at Fermilab National Accelerator Laboratories. Don talks about physics, Fermilab, his books, and some opportunities for teachers and students with QuarkNet.

See this page for episodes you may have missed.

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And Don’t Forget…

Visit our member services web page to ensure that NSTA has your current contact information.

NSTA is offering more Web Seminars through the winter months. Visit the website for more information about these upcoming professional development opportunities.

Professional development courses in your future?
Online options give you a world of choice.
Take a look at these groups offering courses for science educators!


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