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From the Field: Events and Opportunities, June 29, 2021

By Debra Shapiro

From the Field: Events and Opportunities, June 29, 2021

Grades K–College

NOAA Planet Stewards Community Resilience to Climate Change Virtual Workshop
This professional development on July 5–29 is for any educator interested in an introduction to climate change, including educators of all subjects who want to boost their confidence in integrating climate issue discussions in their classroom. Educators will receive National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) tools and resources for their classroom. The workshop will cover the following: how to address climate change controversy; climate change impacts on human health; environmental justice; sustainability in Gulf fisheries; how coastal Texas ecosystems mitigate climate change; and more. The workshop will feature live panel discussions with scientists from NOAA, Environmental Defense Fund, Green Building Resource Center, and others.

Infiniscope’s Build a Virtual Tour Workshop

Place-based education is learner-centered, inquiry-based, and interdisciplinary. This workshop provides the tools and the training to make place-based learning accessible to all of your learners. Get step-by-step guidance on designing and building a virtual tour. The training will take place on July 19–22 at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. (Deadline July 14)

#NGSSchat on Twitter: Analyzing and Interpreting Data  

Join the #NGSSchat professional learning network on Twitter to discuss topics related to the Next Generation Science Standards. Spearheaded by science teachers, this professional learning network focuses on great science teaching and takes place at 9 p.m. Eastern Time. On July 15, the topic will be the practice of Analyzing and Interpreting Data.

Join SciStarter’s Libraries as Community Hubs for Citizen Science Initiative                        

Online citizen science hub SciStarter is looking for public libraries across the country to join an Institute for Museum and Library Services and Moore Foundation–funded initiative that will help a library become a community hub for citizen science. Grantees will receive financial support to purchase materials to build citizen science kits and individualized guidance on how to partner with your community to broaden participation in citizen science. (Deadline July 23)

McDonald Observatory Summer Workshops     

McDonald Observatory and Visitors Center will offer Teacher Professional Development Workshops virtually this summer. Content will be presented in a synchronous/asynchronous format over the course of a week, earning participants eight Continuing Professional Education hours.

  • Discover the Solar System (July 20–23; grades K–8). Using a combination of recorded videos, independent assignments, and live online activities and discussions, teachers will discover patterns in the Sun-Earth system and learn about planets in our solar system. Using common materials from around the house, teachers will experience activities for their classrooms. Content includes a live solar viewing (weather permitting), solar system models, early models of the universe, and more.
  • Galaxies and Dark Energy (July 27–30; grades 6–12). Teachers will learn about galaxies, expansion of the universe, and the Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment. They will experience activities centered around galaxies and universe expansion. The workshop will feature live chats and videos to watch, and some will be independent assignments. All activities use common materials found around the house or classroom, and are ready for you to share with your students. Take a virtual tour of McDonald's biggest telescope, then conclude the week with a live chat with a dark energy astronomer.

Smithsonian K–12 Science Education Action Planning Institute   

The Smithsonian Science Education Center will hold its second fully virtual Action Planning Institute July 27–29. Through live and asynchronous meeting opportunities, individuals and teams will tackle the challenge of ensuring K–12 science education serves the needs of all teachers and learners, whether it is occurring online, in the classroom, or in a hybrid learning environment. Participants will have a chance to share lessons learned from the past year; explore how to integrate best practices in online and in-person science education; address issues of learning loss and learning recovery in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM); and discuss new America Rescue Plan funding opportunities.

Sessions will explore how to approach diversity, equity, accessibility and inclusion in the education space; how to support learning to address learning loss; how to support teachers during the transition back to in-person learning; and what resources are available to undertake this work. Participants will then create action plans to articulate meaningful connections between their knowledge and practice.           

The Awesome Foundation Grant  
This foundation funds projects that bring communities together. Awesome projects include initiatives in a wide range of areas including arts, technology, and community development. The foundation’s 91 chapters are located in 12 countries. Anyone can apply, and grants of $1,000 are distributed monthly. Some chapters routinely contact applicants for interviews before awarding the fellowships. There is no deadline, as submissions are reviewed monthly.

Most chapters prefer projects that contribute to their own communities, though some occasionally consider applications from further afield. Try to apply to a chapter near you, in a location where you have roots, or that you think would have a particular interest in your idea.

Elementary and Middle Level

Hamline University's Virtual Mississippi River Institute   

This professional development opportunity taking place on July 26–28 aims to inspire, educate, and prepare third- through eighth-grade teachers to engage students in STEM disciplines through hands-on, inquiry-based investigations at local watersheds. The standards-informed institute is designed to increase teachers' knowledge in water-related content; enhance STEM-focused investigation skills; expand literacy skills; and help area educators translate professional experiences into meaningful, engaging classroom investigations for students.

National WWII Museum New Orleans Real World Science Virtual Teacher Summer Seminar
The National WWII Museum's Real World Science teacher seminar, taking place on July 12–16, is virtual this year. It is also free of charge and open to anyone who teaches science/STEM. Learn how to teach lessons for grades 5–8 that use stories from WWII as launch points for science investigations! See how to integrate literacy and history with engaging science! Attend 1–2 synchronous meetings daily, and hear about lots of resources and chances to add to your professional learning network. Quality door prizes awarded at every session; e-mail if you have questions. (Deadline July 9)            

Middle Level and High School

Best of ChemEd 2021: Free Summer Symposium

This American Association of Chemistry Teachers event will offer sessions for three days (July 27–29), along with social events that will highlight what ChemEd is all about: a community of chemistry teachers sharing ideas, resources, and successes. Sessions will cover topics like Using Modeling Instruction to create an equitable chemistry classroom; the results of the 2021 AP Chemistry Exam; the introduction of gamification in the chemistry classroom; and Beyond Bohr: replacing the Bohr atomic model with an accessible picture of how atoms and light interact.

High School and College

Webinar: NIH Grant for Summer Research Education Programs for Students and Teachers

The National Institutes of Health has grant funding available for programs that provide research experiences for high school and/or college students or high school science teachers for 8–15 weeks during the summer academic break. Applications demonstrating the potential to impact students and teachers from diverse backgrounds are particularly encouraged. This Summer Research Education Experience Program (R25) provides up to $125,000 direct costs per year for five years to support a defined summer program; it will not fund individual students or teachers. 

Applications are accepted once a year, in March. Research experience programs must fall within the mission of one of the participating NIH Institutes: National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB), National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), and National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS). Learn more by reading the Funding Opportunity Announcement, and register for a webinar taking place on July 27 at 2–3 p.m. Eastern Time. E-mail with questions.

Find more events and opportunities at 

Astronomy Chemistry Citizen Science Climate Change Earth & Space Science Environmental Science Equity General Science Inclusion Inquiry Interdisciplinary News NGSS Professional Learning old STEM Teaching Strategies Middle School Elementary High School Informal Education Postsecondary

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