Thursday, May 2, 2013

Conference....Science in the Classroom! It's Natural

So I said earlier that I have been busy... that is an understatement!  Not only is it baseball and soccer season at my house but I have recently become more active in science leadership opportunities in my region.  My good friend, Sherrie, and I took on a new responsibility of being our Regional Directors for the Virginia Association of Science Teachers.  We have enjoyed going to meetings and really seeing what is going on at the front lines of science leadership. One of our new responsibilities was to offer a mini-conference for teachers in our region.

We were able to secure many high quality teachers (from our division) for an amazing day of science! I really wanted to focus on K-2 because they are often the "lost" ones in science educational development.  We had several really good sessions for them including "thinking like a six year old" - cognitive connections and more! We also had one on Art and Science connections, Science Notebooks and taking science outdoors.  Our master gardener spoke about local resources available to us as well.

Photo: Here we are with Einstein fellow Lynn Reed!My upper grade sessions were also high quality including an amazing session on Oceans for fifth grade teachers, nature journals, the flipped classroom, STEM in the classroom and polar habitats.

Our keynote speaker, Lynn Reed, was an Einstein Fellow from Richmond who is working with the NSF on polar science for two years.  She was able to go to Greenland and Antarctica to participate in scientific studies on polar changes, weather and more.

She recommended a few really good websites: is great! It is a place where students can learn about the Adele penguin, ask questions to the scientists studying them in Antarctica and even get a postcard stamped from the south pole! Click on the penguin to learn more!

Another site that I have visited before is Beyond Polar Bears and Penguins. This site is just what is says...something more than just cutesy arts and craft projects!This website is thematic in nature (cross curricular) that includes literacy, math and science.  It offers professional development articles, and kid friendly research from "in the field".

Here's to hoping that I can be more active on the blog scene again....of course, now it's time for State Testing! (Boo hiss)