TECHNOLOGY, AND SOCIETY (STS)
An emerging field of academic study in itself,
STS is interdisciplinary in nature, as it examines science and technology
as social and cultural phenomena. Researchers make important new
discoveries almost daily—in such areas as genetic engineering,
the environment, emergent diseases, computers and the internet,
nuclear waste, and international agriculture—that lead to
ethical considerations that today's students will have to face;
many of these issues have never been addressed before because they
arose from new scientific knowledge and technological innovation.
Steve Metz, field editor of The Science Teacher, explains in his
December editorial that "when interconnections among science,
technology, and society are made part of science teaching, we empower
students with skills that allow them to become active, responsible,
and thoughtful citizens.” This issue of Science Class
explores how STS can engage your students and help answer the question
"Why do we have to learn this?"
in the News
Article summaries provided by the NSTA WebNews Digest (visit
for national news for science educators).
This month’s news stories, which discuss both research studies
and specific scientific and educational technologies, highlight
the connection among science, technology, and society.
to learn more.
on the Web
is a web-based service from NSTA that provides online content
chosen to augment printed articles and books. It does so through
keywords; the keywords for this issue are
Science and Technology: http://www.scilinks.org/retrieve_outside.asp?sl=92635621112210551011
Journal Articles on STS
The archives of Science and Children provide several articles
that highlight the importance of the connections among science,
technology, and society.
Click here to read more:
To read about STS
in NSTA Press books, visit http://science.nsta.org/enewsletter/2005-12/books_elementary.htm.
To read about the newest titles available from NSTA Press, visit
To receive the latest NSTA catalog for your specific grade level,
a Presence for Science
Building a Presence for Science is the largest
networking initiative of the National Science Teachers Association
(NSTA). The award-winning program is designed to improve the teaching
and learning of science from kindergarten through 12th grade.
Its mission is to end the isolation of classroom science teachers
and to provide them with professional development opportunities
and science teaching resources. Major funding for Building a Presence
for Science is provided by the ExxonMobil Foundation.
To learn more about Building a Presence for Science,
These 90-minute live professional development experiences
use online learning technologies to allow participants to interact
with nationally acclaimed experts; NSTA Press authors; and scientists,
engineers, and education specialists from NSTA government partners,
such as NASA and NOAA—all from the convenience of your desktop!
Educators use online tools that allow them to markup
and annotate presenters' slides, share desktop applications, or
engage in chat, survey, and poll questions with others online.
Seminars may be archived and are available for viewing after the
live event has occurred. Be sure to check out the fall schedule
for these exciting learning opportunities and to register by going
A new report says the United Kingdom’s (U.K.)
scientific competitiveness could be threatened by a lack of practical
science teaching. The U.K.’s National Endowment for Science,
Technology, and the Arts says that science experiments inspire
young scientists. But the organization’s survey of 510 science
teachers found that two-thirds of educators lacked time for conducting
experiments, while many said safety rules deterred them from doing
so. A previous survey found that fear about students’ misbehavior
was the main reason why many schools canceled hands-on science
activities. Government officials say a new curriculum in 2006
will address concerns about a lack of classroom time for experiments.
To read more, visit http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/4470148.stm.
Treasurer Post Open
NSTA seeks applicants for the NSTA Treasurer position. Responsibilities
include oversight of the association’s financial and budgetary
matters. The Treasurer shall be appointed by the Board of Directors
for a three-year term of office, which may be renewed for another
three-year term. Appointees will be expected to devote 10-12 days
of service a year for this nonstaff position. An honorarium will
be provided, as well as reimbursement for required meeting attendance
(travel and per diem).
For additional information about the position’s responsibilities,
Application deadline: January 15, 2006. Interested
individuals are invited to submit their resume, along with a cover
letter that specifies interest in being considered for appointment,
to NSTA Executive Director, 1840 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA 22201-3092.
and Children (S&C) and NSTA have established a
blog devoted to early childhood science (see http://science.nsta.org/earlyyearsblog).
Here you’ll find teaching advice, management tips, favorite
resources, and activity ideas specifically for teachers of grades
preK–2. The blog accompanies Science and Children’s
column The Early Years. To view the first column, visit http://www.nsta.org/main/news/stories/science_and_children.php?category_ID=86&news_story_ID=50933.
Highlights from the online conversations will appear in the print
column. Teachers who post a comment that gets chosen for publication
in S&C will receive one free book
from a select group of NSTA Press publications.
Science and Children (grades preK5) has issued a Call
for Papers on specific topics. Click here to find out more:
for Evening Skies?
Regrettably, Science and Children will no longer include
the Evening Skies Monthly Star Map and Sky Calendar. However, yearly
subscriptions to the map and calendar are available from the Abrams
Planetarium for $11 and can begin at any point in the year. To subscribe,
Subscribers will be mailed hard copies of three star maps and calendars
four times a year to cover the entire calendar year. Or check out
for free star map downloads from StarMaps.com (permission
is required for multiple copies for classroom or science club use).
In addition, Skywatcher's Diary at http://www.pa.msu.edu/abrams/diary.html
posts a monthly detailing of sky happenings. Happy stargazing!
Hard to Reach
If your colleagues would like to subscribe to Science Class,
please direct them to http://www.nsta.org/newsletters.
THE FINE PRINT
e-newsletter is brought to you by the National Science Teachers
1840 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, VA 22201-3092