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Week of January 7, 2013

Table of Contents

NGSS Second and Final Public Draft to be Released Tuesday, January 8

The second (and final) public draft of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) will be released this week, on Tuesday, January 8, at 3 p.m. ET. NSTA encourages science educators to review the draft and provide feedback to Achieve during the comment period, which ends January 29. To review and comment on the draft when it is released, go to www.nextgenscience.org. The final NGSS standards are expected to be released in late March.

Register now for the following free NSTA web seminars on NGSS to be held this week and beyond. Discover all of NSTA resources on NGSS at www.nsta.org/ngss.

Also this month and next—NSTA will host additional web seminars exploring the scientific and engineering practices in A Framework for K–12 Science Education. All will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. (Eastern) and are free.

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Free Web Seminar on How Best to Compete in the 2013 ExploraVision Competition

Don't let your hard work go to waste. You and your students have come a long way on your Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision project—make sure you finish strong! Join us for our web seminar “How to Avoid Disqualification in ExploraVision” on Wednesday, January 9, from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. EST. (New users: log in at 5:45 p.m. EST for an introduction to NSTA web seminars.)

You'll get an insider's view from ExploraVision Ambassadors who have competed in the past and learn the most common causes of disqualification. Find out how you can prevent ineligibility and lead your team to victory! Register for the webinar now.

Alert: The teacher who submits the most projects in each grade category will win a Toshiba tablet, and the school that submits the largest number of eligible projects will win $1,000 worth of Toshiba technology. If you haven't registered your team, it's not too late—register your ExploraVision team today!

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I2I in San Antonio: NSTA Teacher Awards

The Inquiry-to-Insight (I2I) climate change science education project is pleased to offer up to eight travel awards to support high school teachers to attend the annual NSTA conference in San Antonio in April 2013.

The I2I project is a collaboration of scientists, educators, and media designers at Stanford University and the University of Gothenburg in Sweden dedicated to bringing high-quality, interactive, free online resources on climate change and ocean acidification into the classroom. Its most recent program is the International Student Carbon Footprint Challenge (ISCFC), where classes around the world use the project's student footprint calculator to calculate their footprints, compare them with the other classes, and then participate in online, international peer-to-peer discussions about their footprints, envisioning solutions to the broader climate change problem.

The NSTA teacher awardees would commit to attending a half-day I2I "Teachers Summit" on Sunday, April 14, during the afternoon immediately following the completion of the conference. Also attending the summit will be I2I staff, a group of I2I partner teachers from the U.S. and Sweden on an exchange visit, and other interested teachers. The goals of the summit will be to exchange ideas and best practices about climate change education in the classroom and for the I2I team to get feedback from attending teachers on how best to expand our own suite of free, interactive climate change classroom resources.

The amount of the awards will be in the range of $200–$600 per teacher. For more details, information on how to apply, and to find out more about I2I, the ISCFC (next session: Feb 2012) and the Teachers Summit, please visit i2i.stanford.edu.

Deadline: January 31, 2013.

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Don't Miss Out! Deadline is Fast Approaching to Submit a Session Proposal for the 2013 Area Conferences

Share your good ideas at NSTA’s 2013 area conferences. Don’t delay—the deadline for submissions is January 15, 2013. Our 2013 area conferences include Portland, Oregon (October 24–26), Charlotte, North Carolina (November 7–9), and Denver, Colorado (December 12–14).

For more information, visit www.nsta.org/conferences. There you can also submit a proposal for the 2014 NSTA Boston National Conference on Science Education (April 3–6). The deadline for submitting a proposal for the 2014 Boston National Conference is April 15, 2013.

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U.S. Dept. of Ed Offers Fellowships for Classroom Teachers

The applications for 2013–2014 U.S. Department of Education Washington, DC, and Classroom Teaching Ambassador Fellowship are now available. The application period will close on January 29, 2013. Selections will be made in the spring, and 2013 Fellows will start their one-year assignments by August 2013. Below are links to both applications:

  • Washington fellows: a full-time appointment based at the Department’s headquarters in Washington
  • Classroom fellows: teachers to participate on a part-time basis for the department, in addition to their regular school responsibilities, working in collaboration with the department’s regional offices

Fellows work to support the department's mission by employing a cadre of teachers to gain significant knowledge about the department's information and resources, share this information with other educators across the country, and contribute their classroom expertise to the national dialogue. Teaching Ambassador Fellows are outstanding teachers with a record of leadership, strong communication skills, and insights into educational policy based in classroom expertise.

Click here for details.

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How Does a Plant Grow? Raises Children's Awareness of the World of Plants

Children don’t have to be botanists-in-training to discover the message of this book: “All plants are interesting, even the weeds.” Young readers are sure to be intrigued by the wide variety of shapes, sizes, and functions in flowers, fruit trees, and all sorts of other flora seen in bright and whimsical illustrations by artist Phil Smith in How Does a Plant Grow?

NSTA’s new title is written in rhyme and presents the basic structures and functions of seed plants as inquiry explorations. Encountering concepts ranging from how seeds sprout to why leaves turn to the light to the vital roles of stems and roots, K–6 grade children will be inspired by the science while reciting new poems. 

The content correlates to criteria set forth by national science standards and has been vetted by science experts for correctness. Science activity pages are included in a Parent/Teacher Handbook section to guide further discussion.

How Does a Plant Grow? is part of an exciting new division of NSTA Press, NSTA Kids, and is intended to supplement science instruction while encouraging young readers to become avid readers.

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Science Education Professional Development at Its Best: San Antonio

Plan your new year to include professional development to enhance your content knowledge, teaching skills, performance strategies, and to add zip to your instruction. Consider attending NSTA’s National Conference on Science Education, April 11–14, in San Antonio, Texas. Workshops, seminars, symposia, field trips, and the Exhibit Hall are all in the mix. Unique to our national conferences are Professional Development Institutes (PDI) and Research Dissemination Conferences (RDC), with in-depth coverage of topics critical to educators. This year our RDC is titled Next Generation Science Standards' Science and Engineering Practices: The Research Foundation and focuses on the scientific and engineering practices described in A Framework for K–12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas.

Take advantage of earlybird registration, February 22, to save the most.

Featured Presentations:

  • What a Difference a Measurement Makes—Paul A. Stokstad (Founder and President, PASCO)
  • My Wild Life—Mireya Mayor (National Geographic Emerging Explorer)
  • The Bat Flower Plant: New Hope for Treating Cancer? Susan L. Mooberry (Professor of Pharmacology, The University of Texas Health Science Center)
  • When the World Was Warm—Looking Back to the Future—Deborah J. Thomas (Associate Professor, Dept. of Oceanography, Texas A&M University)

Elementary Level Highlights:

  • Engineering Design: An Instructional Strategy to Close the Gap?
  • CSI for Small Fry: Classroom Science Investigations That Encourage Science Processes
  • Growing Science Achievement with the Junior Master Gardener Program
  • Making the Most of a Math and Science Night

Middle Level Highlights:

  • Engineering for Space
  • Scaffolding and Assessing Students' Engagement with the Science Content Extending from Inside to Outside the Classroom
  • BSCS-I Pathway Session: Using Evidence to Construct a Scientific Explanation
  • Effective Content and Performance Assessment Instruction for Your Science Classroom

High School Highlights:

  • Hit the Ground Running! An Authentic Approach to Units and Measurement
  • Using a Project-based Science Unit to Link Next Generation Science Standards, Common Core Standards, and Student Engagement
  • STEM in My Chemistry Classroom
  • Fitting the Puzzle Pieces Together: Integrating Common Core State Standards in STEM-based Courses

Visit www.nsta.org/sanantonio for details and a full schedule of events.

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Online Courses from the American Museum of Natural History

Are you interested in learning about climate change? Do you want to know more about space, or the solar system? Are you looking for graduate or professional development credit? If so, check out the Seminars on Science program from the American Museum of Natural History. Online courses run from January 28 to March 10 and include: Evolution; Climate Change; Genetics, Genomics, Genethics; The Ocean System; Space, Time and Motion; and The Solar System.

Each course is available for graduate credit and is co-taught by an experienced educator and a scientist. For more information, or to register, visit www.amnh.org/learn or contact us directly.

Registration deadline: January 14
Registration: www.amnh.org/learn/Register
Phone: 800-649-6715
E-mail: seminfo@amnh.org

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Delta Education

NSTA 2013 STEM Forum and Expo

NSTA Press-Science By Design

Learn more about NSTA e-newsletter sponsorships

And Don’t Forget…

Visit our member services web page to ensure that NSTA has your current contact information. And when the time comes to renewselect the "Autorenew" option!

Interact with your fellow NSTA members on the list server. Join one list or join them all!
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Download your copy of the NSTA Membership Guide.

Visit the NSTA Science Store for an outstanding array of bestselling books and teaching resources. Receive 30% off the price of the January featured book, Handbook of College Science Teaching.

Click on the logo above for more information and to register for these free 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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