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Freebies for Science and STEM Teachers/From the Field, May 31, 2022

By Debra Shapiro

Freebies for Science and STEM Teachers/From the Field, May 31, 2022

Freebies for Science and STEM Teachers: Grades K–12

Out 2 Lunch Webinars: Data Tools Demos
Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) presents a collection of informative webinars on Earth science data tools for K–12 teachers and others. Dubbed the Out 2 Lunch webinar series, these 15-minute programs feature a 10-minute demonstration of an Earth science data tool or resource, followed by five minutes of Q & A about the resource. The webinars are recorded so teachers can watch them on demand. Past webinars have highlighted Earth science tools and topics addressing Student Engagement Around the GOES-T weather satellite; What’s New With CLEAN? Resources to Support Teaching About Climate and Energy; The USGS Find-A-Feature Photo Challenge; and The Digital Atlas of Ancient Life. 

Freebies for Science and STEM Teachers: Early Childhood

Tinkering for Early Childhood

Tinkering is important in early childhood settings, but educators need resources with information on how to offer these experiences. One resource is Tinkering Together: Exploring Findings and Futures in Early Childhood Tinkering, a National Science Foundation–funded multimedia website that explores tinkering, making, and STEAM in early childhood. Led by tinkering experts at San Francisco’s Exploratorium museum, the site features important early learning practitioners such as childcare providers and representatives of programs in libraries and museums. Watch informative videos, podcasts, and reflections from these experts; learn about tinkering practices in various settings; and find resources to develop your own early childhood experiences.

Freebies for Science and STEM Teachers: Elementary and Middle Level

A Kids Climate Justice Podcast
1Point5, A Kids Podcast About Climate Justice is a new podcast series from A Kids Company About, a network of educators and other partners focused on collaboratively creating resources (e.g., books, apps, podcasts) to help students (and their teachers and parents) tackle challenging, empowering, and important topics. Most appropriate for ages 6–12, the podcast engages students and adults in exploring the challenges facing our planet with scientists, youth activists, and other environmental leaders who have experienced the realities of the climate crisis firsthand. Each episode runs 20- to 30-minutes long and addresses a different topic, such as Why Is the Climate Changing?; How Is Climate Change Impacting Humanity?; What Is the Climate Justice Movement?; and How Does Climate Change Affect Groups of People Differently? Transcripts and resources for further learning accompany each episode. 

Freebies for Science and STEM Teachers: Middle Level Through College

General Atomics Science Education Resources

The General Atomics (GA) Science Education Resources web page offers resources for middle level to college audiences, including science educators, students, and science enthusiasts. You’ll find teaching modules for exploring color, electrical properties of materials, safe driving, and other topics as well as presentations introducing students to various careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). In addition, the site has downloadable posters on potentially tricky science topics such as color mixing, the interaction of light with matter, and the reasons for the seasons. Finally, a section on Fusion Education features posters and infographics explaining the processes involved in fusion technology, as well as resources to learn more about careers in the field. 

Project S.O.W: Food Gardening With Justice in Mind

Developed by educators at Cornell University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Project S.O.W. (Seeds of Wonder): Food Gardening With Justice in Mind is a food gardening curriculum for middle level to college learners (ages 13–19). The curriculum contains four units—Cultivating Community, Gardening With Gratitude, Sowing Seeds of Curiosity, and Rooting Resilience—and is designed for use in school, afterschool, and community settings. Each unit has three components: a shorter Introductory activity that focuses on community and accessing background knowledge; a lengthier activity, Digging In, that adds new information about the topic; and Gardening activities, which focus on teaching students how to grow food and care for a garden. 

Freebies for Science and STEM Teachers: High School

The Periodic Table Unit Plan

Use these resources from the American Association of Chemistry Teachers (AACT) to teach an extended (7- to 10-day) unit on the Periodic Table in grades 9–12. The unit plan has a series of classroom resources—including lessons, activities, labs, projects, videos, simulations, and animations—presented in sequential order to enable students to develop a solid understanding of the periodic table and its components. The unit addresses concepts relating to the periodic table, physical properties, periodic trends, atomic radius, ionic radius, ionization energy, metallic properties, and more. After completing the activities in the unit plan, students will recognize that the current periodic table was developed over time based on many discoveries, models, and revisions from scientists. 

From the Field: Grades K–College

World Ocean Week

Exploring by the Seat of Your Pants and the Explorers Club will host a World Ocean Week (June 6–10) celebration featuring speakers and virtual field trips. Speakers include Peter Girguis, professor of organismic and evolutionary biology at Harvard University and an adjunct oceanographer in Applied Ocean Physics and Engineering at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution; Callie Veelenturf, marine conservation biologist; and Pablo Borboroglu, founder and president of the Global Penguin Society, an international science-based conservation coalition that protects the world´s penguin species. Virtual field trips will include a trip aboard Bob Ballard’s Expedition Vessel Nautilus as the crew maps the ocean floor around Johnston Atoll in the Pacific Ocean and a dive into Dangerous Lagoon to meet sharks, sea turtles, and fish and discover how to keep the ocean healthy, even if you live nowhere near it. Registration is required for speakers and virtual field trips.

Natural History Education DemoCamp

Taking place on June 22–23, the Natural History Education (NHE) DemoCamp is designed to provide materials and resources to K–12 formal and informal teachers, educators, and college faculty seeking easy-to-adopt educational materials that engage students with the natural world. The NHE DemoCamp format gives educators access to open education resources and provides opportunities to discuss these resources with the teachers and educators who developed them. The event is free of charge and will be held virtually via Zoom.

June Social Media Contest

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) wants to help you jump start your back-to-school supplies list for next year. Throughout June, they want to know your most effective classroom management strategies. Three randomly selected winners will receive a school supplies kit to help restock your classroom. Teachers must teach in the United States, a U.S. Territory, or a DoDEA school to be eligible to win. (Deadline June 30)

STEM Around the World Lesson Plan Competition

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) wants to see how you incorporate different cultures from around the world into your lesson plans. Teachers of any grade level or subject can submit an original STEM lesson plan that includes diverse cultures. Three teachers who submit lesson plans will be selected to receive mini-grants of up to $1,500 to help buy equipment for their classroom. The competition opens on June 1; deadline is July 31.

Prizes are a $1,500 mini-grant for first place; a $1,000 mini-grant for second place; and a $500 mini-grant for third place. Teachers must teach in the United States, a U.S. Territory, or a DoDEA school to be eligible to win.

From the Field: Elementary

Out Teach Professional Learning Community (PLC) Scholarships 

Out Teach, a national teacher-development nonprofit organization, aims to equip teachers with the power of experiential learning outdoors to unlock student performance. Out Teach prepares elementary teachers to use school gardens, outdoor classrooms, and green schoolyards to enhance instruction through three-dimensional project-based learning and outdoor-based experiential inquiry-based education. Scholarships are now available to elementary teachers nationwide for the 2022–2023 school year to join the Out Teach Professional Learning Community.

From the Field: Elementary and Middle Level

World Ocean Day for Schools (June 8)

World Ocean Day for Schools is for educators, parents, and students. The 2022 “Our Blue” theme will help students understand and feel their connection to the ocean through their nearest blue space. Visit the website to register for the event, and see for materials for students and educator resources.

Careers Chemistry Climate Change Curriculum Distance Learning Earth & Space Science General Science Inclusion Inquiry Instructional Materials Labs Lesson Plans Life Science Multicultural News Physical Science Professional Learning Social Justice STEM Teaching Strategies Three-Dimensional Learning Middle School Early Childhood Elementary High School Informal Education Postsecondary

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