SIX STAR SCIENCE ONLINE TEACHER (OT) PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM – $1,400 STIPENDS PAID (for completed work)
This program is a 10-month online pedagogy-based professional development that focuses on the three Dimensions in the Next Generation Science Standards: Scientific Practices; Cross Cutting Concepts (especially “Cause and Effect” and “Structure and Function”), and Core Ideas (Life Sciences) and on expanding teacher skills in three major areas: 1) Updating Teacher Content and Pedagogy Knowledge; 2) Understanding the Research Process; and 3) Applying Six Star Science in the Classroom. Fellows receive stipends for completion of their online work.
Online Teacher (OT) Fellows participate in a dynamic and interactive virtual learning community that focuses on exploring effective teaching strategies, understanding the research process, and enhancing classroom materials.
Application deadline: January 31, 2019
More info on the program and an application can be found at: www.frontiersinphys.org
Achieve is thrilled to announce it is seeking applicants for the Science Peer Review Panel!
Achieve's Science Peer Review Panel ("Science PRP") is an elite group of educators who work to evaluate and share high-quality lesson sequences and units that are designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Members of the Science PRP are part of the solution to a persistent problem in the science education field: not enough examples of high-quality instructional materials designed for the NGSS.
Join the Science PRP by filling out this online application and connect with a network of educators across the country committed to advancing science education for all students, develop your expertise in the NGSS, and work to make better science instructional materials more widely available to the science education field. This opportunity includes free, valuable professional learning experiences designed to deepen your understanding of the NGSS and the evaluation process for instructional materials.
Here are a few things current Peer Reviewers have to say about participating in the Science PRP:
"I have been able to collaborate and discuss with people across the nation, and connect with some of the best thinkers in the field. I have grown in my understanding of NGSS and what good science instruction looks like. I have had my views challenged, and have been able to develop confidence and my own voice to share ideas about good science instruction."
"The professional growth I am experiencing is at such a higher rate than I have ever experienced before. This has been extremely valuable."
"The best thing about being a PRP member is the team. It is truly amazing experience of being part of this group. The professional learning network that has been created is very valuable to improving my practice."
"Every time I review a lesson or come to a PRP meeting, I grow as a professional"
Those who are accepted to the Science PRP will receive recognition on the Achieve website, a sample press release for your district or organization announcing your acceptance to the Science PRP, and at the end of the year-long commitment, peer reviewers will be recognized with a certificate of excellence.
Any materials that are determined to be high-quality by the Science PRP will be publicly shared on nextgenscience.org/hqngss so educators and curriculum developers across all states and districts can benefit from these materials. Apply to join the Science PRP here, and learn more about it here.
Ideal applicants for this program will have a solid foundation in A Framework for K-12 Science Education, are comfortable navigating the NGSS across content areas (including the Appendices), and will have experience using the EQuIP Rubric for Science. Applicants will be selected based on their ability to make consistent, criterion-based evaluations using the latest version of the EQuIP Rubric for Science and communicate that evaluation clearly.
Achieve is committed to building a diverse panel and strongly encourages people of all backgrounds to apply. Applicants from a mix of rural, urban, and suburban communities will be accepted.
As we expand the Science PRP, we are looking for more representatives from the 6-8 and 9-12 grade bands in particular, but all are welcome to apply.
The responsibilities of the peer reviewers will include:
For answers to common questions, check out the Science Peer Review Panel website.
Achieve thanks Arconic Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of New York, Bayer Foundation, and Pisces Foundation for their generous support of the Science PRP, EQuIP Rubric for Science, and for working to ensure all students have access to a quality science education.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for additional questions or comments.
Follow us on Twitter and sign up for our monthly newsletter to get all of the latest NGSS updates.
Subject: Evaluating the coherence of science lessons and units with the New Jersey Student Learning Standards for Science.
This two-day workshop is designed to train teachers how to use the Educators Evaluating the Quality of Instructional Products (EQuIP) Rubric for science to measure the degree to which lessons and units are designed for the New Jersey Student Learning Standards for Science.
The purpose of the rubric and review process is to: (1) review existing lessons and units to
determine what revisions are needed; (2) provide constructive criterion-based feedback and suggestions for improvement to developers; (3) identify examples/models for teachers’ use within and across states; and (4) to inform the development of new lessons, units, and other instructional materials.
This workshop is a cosponsored by the New Jersey Department of Education, Liberty Science Center, and Achieve. There is no cost to attend.
Audience: This workshop is most appropriate for K-12 science teachers, building administrators,
and informal educators.
Workshop Dates & Times: December 13-14, 2018 from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm
There is no cost to participate in the training. Registration, parking, and a box lunch are
provided for day fee for parking. Participants are responsible for their own snacks, beverages, and lunch. Food and drinks are available for purchase at the Café Skyline, located on the second floor of the LSC.
Registration for New Jersey Educators: https://tinyurl.com/EQuIPNJ2018
Registration for New York Educators: https://tinyurl.com/EQuIPNewYork2018
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Students help Fred (a gummy worm) reach a life preserver (a gummy candy shaped like a life preserver) inside his capsized boat (an upside-down clear plastic cup) without falling off, using only four paper clips, and no hands!
FunScienceDemos—and Support Pages
These short science demos depict core science ideas students need to know before high school and support the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). A companion site—FunScience Support—offers resources to help teachers extend learning and deepen students' science understandings.
The Science of Baking
This infographic offers simplified explanations of the science of how and why common baking ingredients transform into cookies, cakes, and other baked goods. Teachers can use this visual guide to help students understand what happens during the baking process.
Find more free resources on NSTA's Freebies for Science Teachers page.
As the science education community focuses on how to assess student learning under new science standards, the question of how to determine the quality of potential assessment tasks arises time and again. Today, Achieve is excited to release two new tools intended to assist educators in evaluating science assessment tasks to determine whether they are designed for three-dimensional science standards based on the Framework for K-12 Science Education, such as the Next Generation Science Standards.
The Science Task Prescreen is used to conduct a quick review of assessment tasks to identify any "red flags" - challenges commonly found in science assessment tasks - and determine whether a task is worth a more rigorous evaluation.
The Science Task Screener is used to take a deeper dive into evaluating science assessment tasks. The Screener is organized around four key criteria, each with a set of indicators to help reviewers determine whether the criteria are met and a set of response forms for gathering and analyzing evidence, providing suggestions for improvement, and rating the task. The Screener builds off the criteria in the EQuIP Rubric for Science by more clearly specifying features for the assessment tasks embedded in lessons and units.
If you have questions or are interested in professional development opportunities related to evaluating science assessment tasks, please contact email@example.com. You can also learn more about the broader science professional learning services that Achieve offers, including support for science tasks, here.
The team at UW and CU Boulder is pleased to announce the publishing of a new ACESSE resource to support the process of selecting phenomena that can anchor units of instruction or be used in a scenario as part of a 3D assessment.
Resource E: Selecting Anchoring Phenomena for Equitable Teaching
This pair of workshops is designed to introduce you to the process of selecting phenomena that can anchor an entire unit that supports students’ 3D science learning or that can serve as a basis for a multi-component assessment task. This resource can also be used by individuals wanting to refine their teaching practice around phenomena based instruction. You may have heard a lot about phenomena, but you may also be wondering what exactly they are, and whether using phenomena is any different from how teachers teach today already.
This learning experience will help you:
With respect to the assessment process, this resource supports the task of clarifying learning goals and eliciting evidence of student learning. Specifically, analyzing standards helps to clarify learning goals. In assessment, scenarios present phenomena to students, and then specific prompts are designed to elicit student understanding of core ideas, practices and crosscutting concepts. Once written as a scenario for an assessment, teachers can use the resources introduced in ACESSE Resource B to design specific prompts for their assessments (SEP Task Formats Tool, CCC Prompts Tool). This resource complements Resource C, in that it provides some ways to integrate tools to connect science instruction meaningfully to students’ everyday lives and cultural practices. This workshop has multiple segments, and it is broken into two sessions that last roughly three hours each, which can be organized as a full-day session or across multiple days.
For those of you new to CSSS, ACESSE is a partnership between researchers at the University of Washington and the University of Colorado Boulder and the Council of State Science Supervisors. We are developing and testing resources to help create more coherent and equitable systems of state science education. The resources center on supporting equitable assessment practice and on development of state teams. There’s a link from the CSSS website, and all resources we have developed can be found here. You can follow us on Twitter at @ACESSE_Project.
All of the resources are Creative Commons licensed and can be adapted and used by anyone to support the vision of equitable teaching and learning articulated in A Framework for K-12 Science Education.
NJDOE Science Coordinator, Michael Heinz, created parent information pages about the science standards. Schools are welcome to use them as they are or even rebrand them as their own.
“Supporting Students in Meaningful Engagement in Three-Dimensional Learning Through NGSS Storylines” is a CSSS webinar Michael Novak (from Northwestern University) and Misty Richmond (from Chicago Public Schools). They shared the work they have done creating and implementing 3-Dimensional Storylines, discussed their overall process for planning and creating storylines, and shared two example storylines. Storylines are fundamental, but very complex, organizational structures necessary for creating coherent units of science instruction.
The site offers two downloadable storylines:
OpenSciEd is working to create a complete set of open-source, K-12 science instructional materials designed for the Next Generation Science Standards. Phase two began last week, and the group is seeking teams to complete the middle school curricula. NSTA Executive Director David Evans serves on the Advisory Board. Learn more about the project here.
Request for Qualifications
Download the RFQ
OpenSciEd plans to offer an informational webinar about the Request for Qualifications on Friday, September 14, 2018 from 3:00-4:00pm EST. To register for the webinar, please click here.
The Next Generation Science Standards turn science learning on its head—in a good way. Amplify Science is excited to share our new ebook, What's So Phenomenal About Phenomena?, an introduction to phenomenon-based learning and the NGSS.
The power of phenomena lies in their capacity to bring real life into the classroom. Amplify Science takes a closer look at the powerful role phenomenon-based teaching and learning play in the new standards—and how you can bring them into your classroom.
June 27, 2018 - A new brief out today from Achieve explores the challenges states face as they begin to think about transforming their science assessments to accompany new three-dimensional science standards.
Since 2013, 40 states have adopted the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) or similar standards, signaling a commitment to high-quality and rigorous science education for all students. Any time state content standards undergo such a significant shift, states must develop new assessments to measure student progress toward meeting the new standards. This need presents a number of challenges for state leaders.
Achieve's new brief explores these and other challenges and presents a set of recommendations for states to consider in tackling them.
NSTA guest blogger Anne Lowry explores the power of phenomenon-based learning.
Learn more about how her use of the phenomenon of light engaged the students in her preschool classroom.
News from NSTA Next Gen Navigator
Achieve's EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science (PRP) uses the EQuIP Rubric for Science to evaluate instructional materials and identify lessons and units that best illustrate the cognitive demands of the NGSS. Explore this featured resource for middle school: Disruptions in Ecosystems
I’m writing you about the ‘Tools of Science’ series that I’ve developed with Janice McDonnell, Kim Thamatrakoln (both at Rutgers) and Tilapia Film Inc, along with input and efforts from various collaborators along the way.
‘Tools of Science’ is a series of unique, educational videos and hands on lessons designed to help learners explore the nature and process of science through the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Videos introduce the science and engineering practices from the point of view of practicing scientists and are designed for easy integration into any STEM experience to help illustrate the non-linear, cyclical nature of science and the creative vision and skills needed to conduct scientific research. We currently have five videos (and associated lesson plans) on: ‘Testable Questions’, ‘Collaborations’, ‘Sampling’, ‘Proxies’, and ‘Mathematical Models’. The ultimate goal is to support learners in their understanding of science, increase their identity as scientists and build on their reasoning and sense making skills with regards to scientific data.
We are looking for feedback (via a host survey below) and for subscribers to our YouTube channel to help us disseminate our product. We need 100 subscribers to increase our search function and get a customized URL. Please take a moment to look at our Youtube channel at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCn2r9bLF1oQS7w11EAkoO9w ….and subscribe if interested!
Also, please provide some quick feedback and fill out the survey at: https://rutgers.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_bKJz8rlVRheMvlj
Lastly, please feel free to disseminate this broadly to colleagues that you feel will be interested and will benefit. The ‘Tools of Science’ is a very unique project and one that has been designed to be modular, allowing for other colleagues to create, shape and disseminate videos and teaching content on various topics useful to NGSS across the country.
Thanks for helping.
Department of Marine and Coastal Sciences
71 Dudley Road
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
(732) 932-4083 (fax)
With NGSS requiring Earth & Space Science in high school, some schools are choosing to integrate the NGSS Performance Expectations and DCIs into their existing biology, chemistry, and physics courses. It turns out there are lots of connections to be made between Earth science and chemistry - after all, chemistry is the study of matter, and all of the matter we use comes from the Earth systems. So this begins with the recognition that the Earth is a big sphere of chemicals - how did those elements and compounds form and how did they come together to make the Earth? Then we find that silicate minerals & the rocks made of them constitute 90% of the crust of the Earth, and so are very relevant to the study of chemistry, even though they are currently omitted from introductory chemistry courses.. When we include plate tectonics and weathering in chemistry, we see that the Earth is an active chemical refinery - even making life-and-death differences since chemical composition variations in magma largely determine whether a volcano is explosive or not! This webinar will work on connecting these Earth science facts and processes to topics already in high school chemistry courses, thus opening up literally a whole world of interesting chemistry while also meeting NGSS requirements.
It is worthwhile to note that NGSS asks for both new content and new approaches to teaching and learning. This will result in curricula that contain material that has not been in Earth science courses, nor in physics, chemistry, or biology courses in the past. This necessitates new outlooks for all science educators, making lots of new connections. It will require knowledgeable people from all science disciplines working together to creatively build the Next Generation of science courses that now will include the Earth and Space Sciences.
May 17, 2018 - 4:00 PM Eastern
Register by May 15
Presenter: Martin Schmidt, McDonogh School, MD
Designing Instructional Materials to Support Student Sense-Making in Science Classrooms
Washington, D.C. - March 13, 2018 - Achieve today announced that it is now awarding a first-of its-kind digital badge to science units designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) that have earned a rating of "E: Example of high-quality NGSS design" on the Educators Evaluating the Quality of Instructional Products (EQuIP) Rubric for Science based on a review conducted by Achieve or its Science Peer Review Panel.
Many science instructional materials claim to be aligned to the NGSS with little to no evidence. The quality control that Achieve's review process provides helps educators make smarter decisions about which instructional materials to use. Achieve hopes the NGSS Design Badge will provide an easy way for consumers to be assured that a unit - whether it was found online for free or purchased from a big publisher - is high quality and designed for the NGSS.
This badge is significant for both the education and technology sectors. It represents one of the first times a digital badge is being awarded to a resource for its quality rather than to an individual for skills they have learned or acquired - new technology Concentric Sky has developed just for the NGSS Design Badge.
"We're excited to partner with Achieve on this visionary initiative to extend the use of Open Badges to cover online learning resources," said Wayne Skipper, CEO of Concentric Sky. "The education community is just starting to scratch the surface of what is possible with these technologies, and Achieve is leading the way."
While recommendation lists exist for science instructional materials, this is the first time digital badges will be awarded to specific instructional materials for any subject. This seal of approval can be placed on the developer's website or on the resources themselves for educators to see.
Achieve hopes the NGSS Design Badge will incentivize publishers and developers to use the EQuIP Rubric for Science when designing instructional materials for the NGSS and to take advantage of Achieve's review and support services. Earning the badge will give developers a way to demonstrate to potential customers that their materials are high quality and designed for the NGSS.
Each digital badge awarded will be an Open Badge issued via Badgr, meaning that each badge will be digitally verifiable. By clicking on the badge image, a consumer will see information about the awarded unit, a link to the complete EQuIP review of that unit that describes the evidence associated with earning the NGSS Design Badge, and a link to a list of all other units that have earned the badge. Each badge will be accompanied with the name of the awarded unit and date awarded for immediate recognition.
To learn more about the NGSS Design Badge, please join us for a joint webinar hosted by Achieve and Concentric Sky on April 3 at 1:00 pm ET. Register for the webinar here.
See an FAQ about the NGSS Design Badge here.
Achieve would like to thank Arconic Foundation, Bayer USA Foundation, and Pisces Foundation for supporting this work.
Washington, D.C. - March 8, 2018 - Achieve today announced the addition of 13 new members to its Science Peer Review Panel (PRP) to expand its work evaluating lesson sequences and units designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and sharing high-quality examples online.
Out of 300 applicants from 39 states, Washington D.C., and international locations, these applicants demonstrated extensive knowledge of the NGSS and a critical eye for high-quality materials designed for the NGSS. The new peer reviewers will join the network of 38 other passionate educators on the Science PRP with whom they can build a powerful community and share ideas and resources. The 13 new peer reviewers selected to join the Science PRP are from ten states: Arkansas, California, Illinois, Georgia, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, and Washington, representing rural, urban, and suburban school communities and different grade bands. Over half have identified engineering as an area of content experience, which is a high-need area for the focus of the Science PRP's work, and about half of the new peer reviewers have spent over a decade as classroom teachers.
Throughout the year, peer reviewers will receive free and meaningful professional learning experiences run by experts in the field and designed to deepen understanding of the NGSS and the EQuIP Rubric for Science evaluation process for instructional materials.
Not only is this a great opportunity for professional growth, but peer reviewers play a major role in advancing science education across the country. One of the biggest challenges in NGSS implementation around the country is a lack of high-quality instructional materials designed for the NGSS. The Science PRP addresses this problem by evaluating free and publicly-available materials with the nationally-respected EQuIP Rubric for Science, identifying high-quality examples, and posting them publicly for the education community - both teachers and publishers - to see what materials faithfully designed for the NGSS actually look like.
Those who were accepted to the Science PRP will receive recognition on the Achieve website; at the end of the year-long commitment, peer reviewers will be recognized with a certificate of excellence.
To learn more, check out the Science Peer Review Panel website.
New Science PRP Members
Alexandra Bartfield, Science Teacher, East Brunswick Public Schools
Jen Brown-Whale, Resource Teacher, Elementary Science, Howard County Public School System
Debbie Gordon, Elementary Science Specialist and Project Director for K-12 CA NGSS Early Implementers, Palm Springs Unified School District
Justin Harvey, Physics Teacher, Dacula High School
Lori Henrickson, Secondary Science Project Facilitator, Clark County School District
Holly Hereau, Science Department Chair, Biology and Environmental Science Teacher, Thurston High School
Marshall Hunter II, General and Regents Physics, Greece Arcadia High School
Jacqueline (Jacqui) Lovejoy, 5-8 Science Specialist, Bentonville Schools
Chris Embry Mohr, Science and Agriculture Teacher, Olympia High School
Jesse Semeyn, Science Instructional Coach, District U46, Elgin, IL
Kimberly Weaver, STEM Coordinator, Olympic Educational Service District 114
Barbara Woods, Curriculum Coach; NGSS Early Implementer Project Director, Galt Joint Union School District
James Yoos, Science Teacher/ Science Fellow, Bellingham High School
Current Science PRP Members
Kimberley Astle, Teacher, Fisher's Landing Elementary
Jennifer Brooker, K-12 Science Supervisor, New York
Chris Charnitski, Science Education Specialist, North Carolina
Melissa Collins, Teacher, Shelby County Schools
Christine Depatie, Teacher and STEM Coach, Swanton Schools, Franklin Northwest Supervisory Union
Joyce Depenbusch, Teacher, Skyline Schools, Unified School District #438
Terri Eros, Teacher and Science Co-Chair, Red Clay Consolidated School District
Jean Flanagan, Science Education Research Specialist, Washington DC
Carolyn Frost, Sr. Content Specialist, NWEA
Kathy Gill, Retired Teacher, Davis Joint Unified School District
Amy Hilliard, Lead Teacher, Western Heights Middle School, Washington County Public Schools
Missy Holzer, Teacher, Chatham High School Science
Valerie Joyner, Freelance Elementary Science Writer, California
Diane Johnson, Regional Teacher Partner, PIMSER at University of Kentucky College of Education
Shannon Kenyon, Curriculum Resource Teacher, Lewiston Independent School District
Liz Lehman, University of Chicago STEM Education, School Development Manager
Traci Loftin, K-5 Science Teacher on Special Assignment, Washoe County School District
Emily Mathews, Senior Program Coordinator, Northwestern University
Edel Maeder, District Science Coordinator, Greece Central
Kristen Moorhead, Professional Development Provider, Professional Learning Innovations (PLI), LLC
Bama Medley, Teacher on Special Assignment, Math and Science Specialist, Santa Maria-Bonita School District
Marisa Miller, Assistant Director of Science, Mastery Charter Schools
Janet MacNeil, PreK-8 Science Coordinator, Brookline Public Schools
Aaron Mueller, Teacher, Scullen Middle School
Jeanne Norris, K-8 Curriculum Coordinator, Washington University in St. Louis Institute for School Partnership
Kristin Rademaker, Teacher Leader, Harlem High School
Brianna Reilly, Teacher, Hightstown High School, East Windsor Regional School District
Ryan Revel, Teacher, Sussex Central High School, Indian River School District
Melissa Rogers, Science Curriculum Developer, Washington DC
Dianna Roy, Teacher, South Windsor Public Schools
Nancy Shellenberger, Science Resource Teacher, Monroe 2 Orleans BOCES
Katherine (Kate) Soriano, Curriculum and Professional Development Specialist, Center for Innovation in Engineering and Science Education, Stevens Institute of Technology
Beth Pesnell, K-8 Math & Science Curriculum Specialist, Rogers Public Schools
Amy Sandgren, Science Education Consultant, NextGen Consulting
Nelly Tsai, 7th Grade Science Teacher & Secondary Science Mentor, Irvine Unified School District
Megan Veldhuizen, STEM Coordinator, Lawton Public Schools
Brandi Williams, High School Teacher, Edmond Public Schools
Cari Williams, Computer Science and Engineering Teacher on Special Assignment, California
NJ Audubon's Scherman Hoffman Wildlife Sanctuary in Bernardsville, NJ
July 23 to 27, 2018
Application deadline is March 15, 2018
New Jersey Audubon’s Teacher’s School of Ecology sponsored by Ashland, Inc. is a week-long program for elementary and middle school teachers. The program offers in-depth experiences that use inquiry as a basis for building effective field studies and understanding environmental issues. All activities and learning support STEM + Art concepts and skills as well as the Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core.
Lessons will be drawn from a spectrum of topics including water quantity and quality, sustainable land use and environmental practices, and native species protection and invasive species control. We will focus on a different set of issues each day and provide field experience, lessons and resources to support your existing curricula. Also included will be information on the Eco-Schools New Jersey program that supports sustainable practices through the development of school-based eco-teams.
The institute will include outdoor activities as well as indoor problem solving—both focused on the local area. By connecting the classroom to the real world, teachers can help students become more aware of the world around them, take an active role in preserving their local environments and acquire the critical thinking, problem solving and basic life skills necessary to become informed global citizens.
For more information contact: Kelly Wenzel at 908-396-6506 or firstname.lastname@example.org
DOWNLOAD AND SHARE THE FLYER
Applying the Versatility of Chem Lab Reactions to Generate Understanding through Evidence
From the article "Modeling Periodic Patterns" in The Science Teacher, NSTA September 2017
Perhaps we might regard chemical experiments being taught in high school from a different perspective … one of a thinking process over a proof. Though redox and electronegativity are among many examples of concepts that must be learned and tested for, what makes them believable? Chemical reactions commonly used in high school potentially offer broader opportunities for the NGSS Teacher to engage students in learning to work the evidence. While it is always faster and easier (for a teacher) to simply give working definitions and draw models, processing given experiments for different purposes is far more memorable and open to valuable, formative discussion. This is what Ms. Dusty Carroll of Seneca High School is doing.
Ms. Carroll successfully used concepts in common reactions to provoke evidence rather than simply show a predictable response. Her high school classes were asked to draw on the evidence for thinking how two simple concepts - electron affinity and ionization energy - work. The NGSS approach to understanding changes occurring during a chemical reaction needed a working phenomenon for this – namely, the snatching of electrons from weaker atomic structures. While this paradigm is universally intriguing to humans, it is also evidential. Metals with acids and halogen/halide reactions provide the means to demonstrate the evidence desirable in showing comparative atomic structure functions and properties. For Dusty, it was another way to use chemistry to strengthen her students’ confidence in doing science as well as their reasoning abilities.
We have all found it difficult at times to generate a “wow” factor during lab work; but when Dusty’s students were asked to think through a reaction on their own based on evidence seen, she found that students were more pleased with their success since something they had considered difficult to understand was actually possible to show.
When asked what drew her to write an article on this topic, she modestly replied she wanted to share her ideas; but also wanted others to understand that she continues to tweak labs for deeper purposes and approaches within the NGSS. But isn’t that exactly what science is all about?
I asked if she considered any Real World applications in teaching her Property Reaction topics. She replied that perhaps the broader considerations of how materials work together should be considered, especially within the area of materials science. She advocates working with the students in seeing “patterns” with properties and posing questions. She asks her students to look for the “why” aspect. When there is no prior knowledge to use, patterns are very useful.
When I asked what motivated her students, she was quick to indicate that color really draws in the students when working with chemical reactions. Just like with elementary children, bubbles, color, temperature and other changes focus the interest. She also uses catchy phrases like “stealing an electron”; but later substitutes more appropriate worded phrases and definitions. Nevertheless, the metaphors certainly assist the visualization! Accurate communication is something she insists on, and notebooks are kept with drawings encouraged. Even though mistakes are made due to lack of experience (judging color, time of reaction, degree of change), these are qualitative errors that correct themselves over time. Students are not yet coming to high school with solid understandings of properties and equations.
As for assessing these developing skills in her students, she goes for the “storyline” approach that Mike Heinz introduced during one of his assessment seminars - reasoning being emphasized by evidence.
Dusty is delighted to share her ideas and has with her high school peers. She likes the Peer Review process and uses the feedback. As an active member of NJSTA, we hope to find more articles in NSTA’s The Science Teacher by her as she harnesses more of the NGSS approach.
Dusty Carroll can be reached at Seneca High School, Tabernacle, NJ or at
Submitted by Linda Burroughs, NJSTA Vice-President
Achieve is excited to announce the expansion of the Science Peer Review Panel!
Achieve's Science Peer Review Panel ("Science PRP") is an elite group of educators who work to evaluate and share high-quality lesson sequences and units that are designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Members of the Science PRP are part of the solution to a persistent problem in the science education field: not enough examples of high quality instructional materials designed for the NGSS.
Join the Science PRP by filling out the online application and connect with a network of educators across the country committed to advancing science education for all students, develop your expertise in the NGSS, and work to make better science instructional materials more widely available to the science education field. This opportunity includes free, valuable professional learning experiences designed to deepen your understanding of the NGSS and the evaluation process for instructional materials.
More Information and Application::
K-12 students are invited to attend a 30-minute scientific discussion with a polar scientist. Students will learn about Antarctic food web ecology and how scientists are setting up long-term experiments to understand our changing climate. These calls support the NGSS science practices such as planning and carrying out investigations, data analysis, modeling and asking testable questions.
Call Dates: January - March (topic depedent)
Application Deadline December 1: tinyurl.com/vtc-palmer
DOWNLOAD flyer for details.
Palmer Station LTER Website: pal.lternet.edu/
The TeachEngineering digital library is a collaborative project between faculty, students and teachers associated with five founding partner universities, with National Science Foundation funding. The collection continues to grow and evolve with new additions submitted from more than 50 additional contributor organizations, a cadre of volunteer teacher and engineer reviewers, and feedback from teachers who use the curricula in their classrooms.
TeachEngineering is a searchable, web-based digital library collection populated with standards-based engineering curricula for use by K-12 teachers and engineering faculty to make applied science and math come alive through engineering design in K-12 settings. The TeachEngineering collection provides educators with *free* access to a growing curricular resource of activities, lessons, units and living labs.
Formation of the TeachEngineering collection was funded primarily under the NSF National Science Digital Library program, aiming to establish a national digital library that constitutes an online network of learning environments and resources for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education at all levels. Many other generous sponsors and web partners have enabled its ongoing development and promotion.
The NGSS website, www.nextgenscience.org/, was recently updated based on multiple rounds of feedback from teachers, administrators, district and state leaders, and other NGSS advocates. Some webpages have been redesigned to provide clearer navigation for site users to search the standards and locate available resources.
Learn more: www.nextgenscience.org/news/website-redesign-makes-it-easier-search-standards-and-find-resources
Home page: www.nextgenscience.org/
Sign up to learn how to effectively assess the three-dimensional learning and teaching needed to realize the vision set forth in the Framework for K–12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards. Join NSTA for a virtual conference on Saturday, October 21, at 10 a.m. ET. Prices: Members $63; Nonmembers $79. View the presenters here and the agenda here.