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Week of January 21, 2013

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Spring Fling for Science Educators, San Antonio 2013

NSTA’s National Conference on Science Education, April 11–14, in San Antonio, Texas, will be the temporary home to thousands of science educators from across the nation. Joining professional development experts, scientists, and celebrities, teachers will have access to almost 2,000 workshops, seminars, institutes, and presentations. Coverage includes best practices, Common Core, NGSS, student performance, assessment, and content sessions to build your knowledge. For K–16 teachers and administrators, in every discipline, we welcome you to the sunny south location which offers the popular Riverwalk, fine dining, exciting theme parks, attractions, museums, great nightclubs, nightlife and entertainment.

Check out some of our featured events:

  • The Bat Flower Plant: New Hope for Treating Cancer?—Susan L. Mooberry (Professor of Pharmacology, University of Texas Health Science Center)
  • When the World Was Warm—Looking Back to the Future—Deborah J. Thomas (Associate Professor, Dept. of Oceanography, Texas A&M University)
  • The Day the Mesozoic Died – ON THE BIG SCREEN!—The disappearance of the dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous period posed one of the greatest, long-standing scientific mysteries. This short film, crafted for the classroom, follows the trail of scientific evidence leading to the stunning discovery that an asteroid struck the Earth 66 million years ago, triggering a mass extinction. Join us for the film, popcorn, and a drink, and receive a free copy of the film on DVD. (Compliments of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute)
  • What Works in Science Classrooms: Developing Student Understanding Through Classroom Inquiry, Discourse, and Sense-Making—Full-day, ticketed institute, April 10
  • Science Process Skills Are Tools for Learning (Elementary)
  • They're Not Too Young—Emergent Writers Thinking and Writing Like Scientists (Elementary)
  • Uncovering Student Science Ideas as a Springboard to Deeper Understanding (Elem–Middle)
  • Don't Crash and Burn with Meaningless Assessment (Middle)
  • Grab-and-Go Geoscience Education: GeoMapApp Learning Activities (Middle–College)
  • Using a Project-based Science Unit to Link Next Generation Science Standards, Common Core Standards, and Student Engagement (High School)
  • STEM in My Chemistry Classroom (High School)
  • Field Trip: SeaWorld in Depth—Slip into a wetsuit and interact with beluga whales and sea lions. (Ticketed)

Use our conference scheduler to see all the San Antonio sessions. Register by February 22 to save the most.

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Next Generation Science Standards Public Comment Period Ends Jan. 29—Let NSTA Resources be Your Guide

The comment period on the second (and final) public draft of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) ends January 29. All science educators, administrators, and other stakeholders are strongly encouraged to review the draft and provide feedback online to Achieve. Review the draft here.

NSTA has a vast collection of materials organized by topic and disciplinary core ideas to help you study the second public draft of NGSS. Find them here.

Take a look at the short video developed by Matt Krehbiel, Science Education Program Consultant for the Kansas State Department of Education, that will help you to navigate the Next Generation Science Standards website and the Achieve survey.

Learn more and sign up for one of these upcoming NSTA webinars on Using the NGSS Practices in the Elementary Grades (1/29) or Making Connections Between NGSS and Common Core Math and ELA (2/12).

Watch Montana teacher of the year Paul Anderson’s comprehensive video series on NGSS.

Take a peek at one of the eight webinars presented earlier this fall that focused on the Scientific and Engineering Practices described in A Framework for K–12 Science Education.


Learn more about the members-only webinar on NGSS with NSTA’s Ted Willard on January 22.

This web seminar is for current, active NSTA members ONLY. Due to processing constraints, all members must have joined or renewed NSTA membership by last Friday, January 18.


Mark your calendars now and look for more information on the NGSS webinars coming this winter and spring (all of them 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. ET):

  • February 19: Patterns
  • March 5: Cause and effect: Mechanism and explanation
  • March 19: Scale, proportion, and quantity
  • April 2: Systems and system models
  • April 16: Energy and matter: Flows, cycles, and conservation
  • April 30: Structure and function
  • May 14: Stability and change

Read and download NSTA’s growing collection of monthly journal articles exploring the Framework. Articles examine the practices, crosscutting concepts, connections to common core, and more. Watch for upcoming articles on the core ideas by Rodger Bybee, Joe Krajcik, and Michael Wysession.

Learn more about the new members-only NSTA listserv dedicated solely to NGSS.

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Lab Out Loud Looks at NGSS, Draft Two

With the recent release of the the Next Generation Science Standards second draft, co-hosts Brian Bartel and Dale Basler caught up with Ted Willard, Program Director for NSTA. In his role at NSTA, Ted supports teachers in the implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards. Ted guides Lab Out Loud on the important points of the second draft, where to find more resources, and how to review and comment by January 29, 2013.

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Take the NSTA Reports Poll

Homework. We’ve all done it. Students (almost universally) loathe it. Some educators agree with them; others say it’s invaluable. We want to know, does homework work for your students?

Let us know what you think!

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Earn Graduate Credits Online This Spring

NTEN logoMontana State University's online graduate courses for science teachers still have a few openings. The courses are all part of MSU's National Teachers Enhancement Network (NTEN), which celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2013.

Physics courses include General Relativity, Comparative Planetology, The Science of Sound, and Astronomy for Teachers.

Earth Science courses are Fundamentals of Oceanography, Weather and Climate for Teachers, and Landforms for Elementary Teachers.

Other courses include Water Quality in the Classroom, The Dirt on Soil Science, Microbial Ecology, and Environmental Science Education: Winter Ecological Field Studies.

Courses are designed for elementary, middle, high school, and community college teachers, and offer fully online graduate credits. Coursework may apply towards MSU's graduate certificates in science teaching and online master's in science education.

NSTA members receive a discount on many courses.

Visit eu.montana.edu/NTEN or call (406) 994-7798 or (800) 435-1286 (toll-free). E-mail distance@montana.edu.

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NSTA Press-Becoming a Responsive Science Teacher

NSTA 2013 STEM Forum and Expo

NSTA Press-What Does an Animal Eat?

Learn more about NSTA e-newsletter sponsorships

And Don’t Forget…

Visit our member services web page to ensure that NSTA has your current contact information. And when the time comes to renewselect the "Autorenew" option!

Interact with your fellow NSTA members on the list server. Join one list or join them all!
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Download your copy of the NSTA Membership Guide.

Visit the NSTA Science Store for an outstanding array of bestselling books and teaching resources. Receive 30% off the price of the January featured book, Handbook of College Science Teaching.


Click on the logo above for more information and to register for these free professional development opportunities.

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Professional development courses in your future?
Online options give you a world of choice.
Take a look at these groups offering courses for science educators!
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