NJSTA received the following information from Circa Interactive.
Computer Science Education Week starts on December 4. The week aims to raise awareness of the need to bolster computer science education around the world by encouraging teachers and students to host computer science events throughout the week. These events can include teacher-guided lesson plans, participating in the Hour of Code, watching computer science videos, or using your own resources to help inspire interest among students. Here are a few computer science resources that were just published by renowned universities. These resources can provide K-12 students with valuable information about different career fields that an interest in computer science can lead to, from education and health information management, to electrical engineering.
Circa Interactive is a digital marketing agency in higher education.
The United States Super STEM Competition (USSSC) is an educational non-profit organization running a yearly competition to challenge the creative mind of all middle school, high school and college students. The main focus for 2018 is to provide an opportunity for students to demonstrate their innovative knowledge and skills by competing towards one goal ...success! It is easy to enter....simply register online for one or more divisions. Design the project based on the official division rules, then submit it to us before the posted deadline for a chance to win recognition awards for your school, students or classroom. Additionally, female students of registered schools are eligible to apply for the Susan Sanford Memorial STEM Scholarship.
The competition is open to all United States public, private, vocational, charter, magnet and home-schooled students. There are no worries of travel expenses to the competition site at Somerset Berkley Regional High School in Somerset, Massachusetts. Most Divisions call for submitting a video of their completed projects to us. Divisions are guided by the curriculum standards of the Next Generation Science Standards, Standards for Technological Literacy and the Massachusetts Science and Technology/Engineering Framework. The USSSC is a student competition approved by the National Association of Secondary School Principals.
Registration Fee: $25 per division entered
Registration Ends March 1, 2018
How much science can you find in a shopping cart? Join NSTA on Thursday, November 16, 2017, from 6:30-8:00 pm ET, and engage your students with STEM though the science of food, including how it’s grown and processed for consumption.
This interaction with agriculture (InterAgtion) web seminar will share classroom-ready resources for investigating phenomena observed daily from farm to fork and the related science and technology careers.
More information and registration:
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.
Generation Beyond - a first of its kind, national educational program to bring the science of space into thousands of homes and classrooms across America. The program is designed to inspire the next generation of innovators, explorers, inventors and pioneers to pursue STEM careers. Virtual Field Trip. Video Challenge Competion. Resources.
More STEM Education Programs funded by Lockheed Martin:
Inspiring a new generation of inventors.
The Lemelson-MIT Program celebrates outstanding inventors and inspires young people to pursue creative lives and careers through invention.
Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams™ are comprised of high school students, educators, and mentors that receive up to $10,000 each to invent technological solutions to real-world problems of their own choosing. STEM educators from the continental U.S., Alaska, Hawaii, and territories of the U.S. may apply.
The initial application is available online each October and due at the beginning of April for grants to be awarded for the following academic year.
The New York Academy of Sciences is proud to announce the release of its new Innovation Curriculum, a free resource to engage middle and high school students in authentic project-based learning!
Aligned to Next Generation Science Standards, this flexible curriculum teaches students how to solve challenges facing their communities—and communities around the world—by applying principles of scientific research and design thinking. Along the way, students will build STEM knowledge and develop 21st-century skills like critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication.
Use the materials to support students competing in the Future of Buildings and Cities Challenge starting October 19, or run a challenge of your own!
Download the Curriculum
This FREE resource is available in two forms.
Attend an Online Training Session
Thursday, October 12: 6–8 PM Eastern time
We are hosting a webinar to offer guidance to educators interested in implementing these resources. To register, visit: www.nyas.org/events/2017/webex-implementing-the-gsa-innovation-curriculum/
Join our Professional Learning Community
We are also hosting a FREE online community to provide ongoing support to educators as they use these resources with students. Get advice from expert teachers, connect with fellow educators, and more. To sign up, visit: docs.google.com/forms/d/1riRcRes7-TSWx6GYLWrBsf7v2HnkZ3i-jC9kbJ0wTz4/viewform?edit_requested=true
The NASA Education team is seeking K–12 science teachers to help develop videos presented by crew members aboard the International Space Station. Videos will highlight experiments, facilities, or capabilities aboard the space station with connections to STEM topics. For more information or to get involved, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you to the American Association of Chemistry Teachers for sharing this information.
Engineering is Elementary has just posted some new videos.
The EiE classroom video collection offers a window into classrooms engaging in elementary engineering across the country. In these videos, you’ll see expert teaching techniques in action and hard-working student engineers, as well as short interviews with educators about their experience teaching EiE.
Learn more about the newest videos: blog.eie.org/want-to-see-engineering-in-action-check-out-our-newest-classroom-videos
EiE Website: www.eie.org/
Day of Design is a national movement that teaches creative problem solving across the entire student pipeline, K-12 and collegiate. The aim is to eliminate the STEM gap by teaching students how to be innovators and create change in their own communities.
Day of Design invites teachers and students in design challenge activities leading up to its culminating event Oct 6th, 2017, Day of Design Live. This event will be live streamed and feature engaging discussions, experiential learning modules, and a live challenge which we invite classrooms across the nation to join in virtually.
Using Technology in Designing a Hawk Migration Curriculum: A Young Teacher’s Journey
Kirsten Fuller’s interest in birds began while being homeschooled. Her mother was interested in birds and the natural world, so she designed Kirsten’s curriculum around environmental science and ecology. Both participated in the Cornell University Citizen Scientist Project called “FeederWatch”, which required the identification of birds that visited their home birdfeeder for Cornell’s data base. This interest continued with an ornithology course at Rowan University, and introduced Kirsten to employment opportunities in the field of ornithology. After graduating, her first internship was with New Jersey Audubon at the Cape May Bird Observatory (http://www.njaudubon.org) where she educated children and adults about birds. This internship was followed up at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary (www.hawkmountain.org), in Kempton, Pennsylvania. In this position, she designed an educational curriculum that highlighted scientific data collected on Broad-winged Hawks; and ultimately solidified her passion for birds of prey. What would be more satisfying, however, was participation in a real scientific study. This opportunity would become available with an organization called The Peregrine Fund (www.peregrinefund.org).
During her internship at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, her studies focused on a species of hawk called the Broad-winged Hawk. These birds are local residents of eastern deciduous forests during their breeding period, and are known for spending the rest of the year undertaking a 10,000-mile migration to South America (See picture). This made them an ideal subject for a multi-dimensional study curriculum. Scientists at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary researched the specific movements of these birds by attaching tracking devices to the backs of thirteen birds (See picture). Currently, the research activity focuses primarily on the ecology of the hawk during its migration. Google Earth Pro is used to analyze this scientific data by helping plot where the migrating birds are found during these months. Kirsten went on to use the data collected by these tracking devices to create a STEM curriculum for high school students.
Though curriculum is primarily science-based, it has the potential for extensions into other STEM areas as physics, math, and engineering. Extension activities using physics and engineering practices were developed with her supervising professor at Rowan University, Dr. Issam Abi-El-Mona. One extension includes using engineering practices to design model airplanes, mimicking the wing design of different species of birds. For example, an airplane designed with long, wide wings for soaring, like a Broad-winged Hawk would be tested against an airplane designed with pointed wings for diving at fast speeds, like a peregrine falcon. Besides understanding the physics of Bernoulli’s Principle, students would need to collect mathematical data as evidence of their interpretation of the Structure & Function [NGSS Cross Cutting Concept] of a bird’s wing. Kirsten has aligned the curriculum with the Next Generation Science Standards to make it easier for teachers to implement in their classrooms. In fact, she plans to pilot this curriculum in her own student teaching this fall.
As Kirsten gained experience with researching birds, she quickly realized that in order for her to teach this science, she would benefit from even more experience. An opportunity arose for her to work for The Peregrine Fund, an organization that conducts avian conservation studies worldwide. Her project focused on an endangered species called the Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk in the central mountain region in Puerto Rico, and so that is where she went this summer. This was a much different experience than her previous internships because it involved professional field research. Within this project, she acquired many new science skills and conducted actual nest observations of this species throughout their breeding cycle in Puerto Rico. An adventure she will always remember, Kirsten plans a future that will include attending graduate school so she may continue her interest in ornithology.
By Linda Burroughs
Vice President / Central Region NJSTA
Science Education Specialist
Kirsten Fuller is 24 and a 2015 graduate of Rowan University with a BS in Biology and a BA in secondary education this December 2017. Since 2015, she has been employed by several conservation organizations, notably the New Jersey Audubon, Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, and the Peregrine Fund. This fall she is student teaching at Atlantic City High School to complete her teaching certificate.
She can be reached at Kirstenafuller@gmail.com for more information on her Broad-winged Hawk curriculum for interested teachers. She is also available to speak to a class in person. Check out www.hawkmountain.org, www.njaudubon.org, and www.peregrinefund.org for more information about the organizations where she interned. See also http://www.birds.cornell.edu/citscitoolkit/projects/clo/PFW for FeederWatch.
This year, Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation LCEF is seeking ways to provide the tools to help educators and parent groups through educational challenges by providing the greatest impact.
Projects should fall into one of the following categories:
Deadline: September 29, 2017
A summer Robotics Learning activity offered a chance for Appalachian girls to experience 21st century technology in a fun atmosphere. Deborah Hicks-Rogoff, founder and Executive Director of the camp, explained the importance of the new robotics program: “Having a STEM learning activity featuring robotics was an exciting opportunity [for girls] living in economically vulnerable rural communities. This kind of activity is part of what will inspire girls to become empowered leaders in a new Appalachia.”
The PARTNERSHIP FOR APPALACHIAN GIRLS’ EDUCATION (PAGE), located in Madison County, North Carolina, runs an educational program for adolescent girls each summer. This past summer, the activities featured a Robotics Program for the first time as one of its offerings, a resource that had its roots in the State of New Jersey.
Duke University sophomore Caroline Potts, a biomedical engineering major, directed and ran the robotics program during the six-week long program. Ms. Potts had previously taken a high school robotics course taught by the Vorpal Robotics, LLC company founder, Steve Pendergrast, who originally developed them at Pope John XXIII Regional HS in Sparta, NJ The students didn’t know it, but they were actually testing a new educational hexapod (six-legged) robot developed by the New Jersey firm, Vorpal Robotics, LLC. Vorpal donated eight robots to PAGE in order to get early feedback on how they worked with real students. “The girls were immediately excited to see one pre-built hexapod robot actually walk and dance,” said Ms. Potts. “Then, as we started to build the kits in small groups, their interest really deepened. One girl exclaimed, ‘I can’t believe I’m actually building a robot!’”
The robots, which use structural parts that are made on a 3D printer, were designed to be built within a two hour period and are programmable using the MIT Scratch language. “In the second three-week session,” Ms. Potts reported, “I concentrated more on the programming aspect. The robots can be wirelessly controlled by Scratch programs which use an easy-to-learn drag and drop interface. Scratch is already used by many schools to introduce programming.”
One girl was so inspired by the ability to control the hexapod using her own programs that she actually cut another activity she was supposed to attend in order to get an extra session with the hexapod. “She was so motivated that I looked the other way,” Ms. Potts explained. “I wasn’t going to stifle her enthusiasm to learn how to program!”
“We received an incredible amount of great feedback from the young ladies during the PAGE program,” commented Steve Pendergrast, whose company donated the robots. We were glad to learn that students as young as sixth grade were able to successfully build them in a classroom setting; and we made several changes to the design based on their feedback. We were very happy to support the great work PAGE is doing in these underserved rural areas to inspire girls to develop career ideas using technology. We have made the Hexapod open source so anyone can print the 3D parts; and for convenience, we provide low cost kits containing all the electronics.”
At the end of the summer program, students and parents attended a presentation to see what the students achieved. One of the students had been to PAGE for several summers in a row. When people asked her what PAGE was all about, she said, ‘Robotics!’ even though that was only one of many activities! “It only took a few 3D printed robots and one motivated college intern to open up a whole new world of science and technology to these girls,” Pendergrast said. “We will definitely be supporting PAGE and other similar programs in the future.”
The STEM Project Annual Competition is an online competition for middle school girls attending schools in PA, NJ, and DE. Middle school girls currently in grades 5-8 (including rising 9th graders) can use their skills in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) to build something useful or conduct scientific research to solve a real-world problem. They can either use scientific methods to perform a hypothesis driven research to answer a question or can follow the principles of engineering design to build something. They need to register online by submitting the electronic application form and also email a written project report (less than 20 pages) along with a short video (less than 2 minutes long) to: email@example.com
The details of the competition guidelines can be found at this link:
The details about how to submit the completed project application can be found here:
The deadline to submit the completed project is 9/17/2017.
Discovery Research PreK-12 (DRK-12)
Synopsis of Program:
The Discovery Research PreK-12 program (DRK-12) seeks to significantly enhance the learning and teaching of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and computer science (STEM) by preK-12 students and teachers, through research and development of STEM education innovations and approaches. Projects in the DRK-12 program build on fundamental research in STEM education and prior research and development efforts that provide theoretical and empirical justification for proposed projects. Projects should result in research-informed and field-tested outcomes and products that inform teaching and learning. Teachers and students who participate in DRK-12 studies are expected to enhance their understanding and use of STEM content, practices and skills.
The DRK-12 program invites proposals that address immediate challenges that are facing preK-12 STEM education as well as those that anticipate radically different structures and functions of preK-12 teaching and learning. The DRK-12 program has three major research and development strands: (1) Assessment; (2) Learning; and (3) Teaching. The program recognizes the synergy among the three strands and that there is some overlap and interdependence among them. However, proposals should identify a clear focus of the proposed research efforts (i.e., assessment, learning, or teaching) consistent with the proposal's main objectives and research questions. The program supports five types of projects: (1) Exploratory, (2) Design and Development, (3) Impact, (4) Implementation and Improvement, and (5) Conferences and Syntheses. All five types of projects apply to each of the three DRK-12 program strands.
Happily, she followed up on my observation with an article that she and her collaborators produced in the Feb’17 issue of the NSTA journal Science Scope entitled From Fish Tank to Fuel Tank. Congratulations to Eileen Antonison and her students on successfully developing a STEM design to produce a biofuel from common algae that could replace the more expensive application of corn or soy plants as we do now.
Ms. Antonison is a STEM teacher at the Franklin Avenue Middle School in Franklin Lakes, NJ and an NJSTA Simmons Scholar. Though the generosity of grants and collaboration with two other teachers in the fields of technology and science, her students successfully transformed a common photosynthesis lab into a proper NGSS research investigation.
Among other STEM skills employed, the apps for Google Sketch-up, Python and Raspberry Pi helped the students design the growth chambers for the algae. Real World laboratory conditions with Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, a Biosafety One organism, were utilized to regulate growth parameters, arguing further testing from data and generating many group discussion sessions. As often happens with science investigations, an “accident” resulted in an unanticipated outcome when two different fertilizers were inadvertently purchased. These micro-nutrients were tested individually anyway, and then mixed with no expectations of a difference. However, the results showed that they worked best if used together!
Read more about their foray into this exciting research in their article. Hopefully, while we are asking our students to communicate better through the NGSS experience, more teachers will seriously consider writing up their classroom experiences for publication!
From Fish Tank to Fuel Tank is available for download from the NSTA site.
By Linda Burroughs
Vice President / Central Region NJSTA
Science Education Specialist
ASSET STEM Education announces Project-based Learning Through Teacher Externships, an innovative pilot program designed to provide you with an externship at a STEM-related business, where you'll observe firsthand the challenges your students will likely face in their future careers, acquire the knowledge and skills to equip them to tackle these challenges, and discover opportunities to bridge what they're learning in the classroom with the real world through project-based learning.
All you have to do is
For more information, download the Teacher Overview, or Click Here.
To register, or if you have questions, please contact Maleea Johnson via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone at 412-481-7320 ext. 201.
Space is limited; register by August 1 to guarantee your spot.
Project-based Learning Through Teacher Externships is sponsored by Arconic Foundation with additional support from Chevron, Consol Energy, and PPG Industries Inc.
Know a STEM professional or business that would be interested in participating? Contact Karen Ahearn at email@example.com or 412-481-7320 ext. 203.