2021 Virtual Annual Conference

February 26-27, 2021









Breakout #1 | Friday, February 26 -- 6:55-7:55pm EST

STEM Teaching Tools: Free Resources to Support Equitable 3D Science Instruction

Philip Bell, University of Washington

Professor of Education

In this session, participants will learn about and use STEM Teaching Tools, a suite of accessible, bite-sized practice briefs aimed at specific aspects of science education with research- and practice- based ideas and actionable advice. The STEM Teaching Tools initiative (http://stemteachingtools.org/) includes free learning resources for teachers to help them implement the vision of the NRC Framework for K-12 Science Education. Co-written by teachers and researchers, these accessible, strategy-packed tools are great conversation starters and tools for extended professional learning. In this session, we’ll explore the suite of tools and explore how to use them to dive into various topics in science education.

All Students' Ideas Matter

Page Keeley

Author/Independent Consultant

Students of all ages and backgrounds bring a variety of ideas to the classroom. This session will explore how to use specially designed questions to uncover students' ideas and use them to build a bridge between their initial ways of thinking and scientific ways to think about phenomena.

Strategies for Sensemaking

Tricia Shelton National Science Teaching Association

Director of Professional Learning and Standards Implementation

Whether you are teaching in the classroom, a distance-learning environment, or a combination of the two, our goal remains the same--provide ALL students opportunities and access to science learning. In this session, participants will experience distance-learning strategies in supporting all students in actively trying to figure out how the world works or sensemaking.

Questions, Claims, and Evidence: Engaging Elementary Students in Argument-Based Inquiry

Lori Norton-Meier, PhD, University of Northern Iowa

Director, Jacobson Center for Comprehensive Literacy

Argument-Based Inquiry (ABI) is an emerging practice in elementary classrooms. This session will focus on an exploration of ABI in elementary classrooms - what it is, examples of what it looks like in action, and a brief discussion of the research on teaching and learning with ABI.

Putting Together Three Dimensions in NGSS Classrooms with the ASET 3D Map

Dr. Lin Xiang, University of Kentucky

Assistant Professor of Science Education

This interactive workshop will introduce participants to an ASET 3D Mapping tool that helps teachers planning NGSS-aligned teaching. This 1-hour session will be broken into three main sections. The presenter will first introduce the participants to the 3D mapping tool by walking them through the components of the map and internal connections of the components. The presenter will then lead the participants in analyzing an existing 6-8 curriculum with respect to the related standards, phenomena, learning objectives, science practices, crosscutting concepts, and disciplinary core ideas. The session is concluded by sharing the lessons learned from researchers and practitioners who have used the 3D map in planning and revising NGSS-aligned science learning experiences. After working in small groups and engaging in whole group discussions, participants will walk away with an NGSS planning tool and tangible unit and lesson plan ideas linked with NGSS.

Equity in Science Education

Rae McEntyre, Kentucky Department of Education

Science Consultant

Students bring a wide range of experiences and interpretations when it comes to understanding science ideas. How aware of this are we as educators? This session will help bring awareness to this issue. Participants will explore how students use culture and experiences through experiential learning and discussion. Participants will be provided resources for furthering their own learning around this topic.

Developing 3-Dimensional Phenomenon-Based Assessments in Science

Erica Baker, Washington County Schools

NBCT, North Washington Middle School

During this session we will review tasks using Achieve’s Task Prescreener in order to see what improvements should be made to the assessment to make them better designed for standards based on the Framework. We will explore a variety of resources to support the development of 3 Dimensional Task aligned to the NGSS/KCASS. Lastly, we will reflect on the changes needed around assessment in our own classroom, school, or district.

Strategies for Cementing the Learning

Patti Works, Amplify Professional Learning Specialist

PIMSER Regional Teacher Partner

Let's take a look at some strategies you can implement as you explore different phenomena in your science class and want to cement the learning. We'll look at a few strategies from BSCS, Instructional Leadership in the Science Practices, and other sources. Add to your strategies tool kit while you join this session. There will be an opportunity for you to share other strategies that you've found effective in a strategy share with other participants, if you'd like!

Breakout #2 | Saturday, February 27 -- 9:30-10:30am EST

Uncovering Middle and High School Students' Ideas in Earth Science

Page Keeley & Stephanie Harmon

Author/Independent Consultant; KSTA President

Students bring a variety of alternative ideas to the Earth Science classroom. Explore how probing questions can reveal how students really think about Earth science phenomena prior to instruction and how you can use their ideas to inform your teaching.

Have you Daily Do-ed? New Sensemaking Lesson plans from NSTA

Tricia Shelton National Science Teaching Association

Director of Professional Learning and Standards Implementation

NSTA now has sensemaking lesson plans to support the Framework vision for science education and the focus on ALL students. These sensemaking tasks target specific grades and gradebands including a family section to support science learning in the home. Come and experience one of these lesson plans packed with guidance for teachers in how to support ALL students in building and sharing ideas together- online or in the classroom.

The critical role of writing in science: Three questions we need to ask when talking to elementary scientists

Lori Norton-Meier, PhD, University of Northern Iowa

Director, Jacobson Center for Comprehensive Literacy

In this session, we will explore the variety of ways young scientists write in elementary classrooms along with the opportunities and invitations teachers can make to connect literacy and science practices. We will explore three critical questions we should ask when we talk with young scientists about their writing and thinking.

Supporting NGSS Crosscutting Concepts with Agent-based Computer Models

Dr. Lin Xiang, University of Kentucky

Assistant Professor of Science Education

Agent-based computer models (ABMs) have gained popularity in STEM fields due to their power to investigate dynamic changes in complex systems. Building upon a set of interconnected agents, ABMs can be used to represent patterns, test cause-and-effect mechanisms, construct system models, and reveal stability and changes on different spatial and temporal scales. For example, ABMs have been used to demonstrate short- and long-term changes in an ecosystem, model disease epidemics—such as COVID-19, and explore solutions for contemporary environmental issues. This session presents the pedagogical use of online ABMs in developing middle students’ understandings about CCCs and incorporating CCCs in their views of science. In this 1-hour session, teachers will gain knowledge in 1) distinguishing agent-based vs. non-agent-based computer models, 2) identifying the CCCs supported by certain ABMs, and 3) designing ABM-supported mini tasks for middle school students.

Boosting Academic Discourse in Your Classroom

Erica Baker, Washington County Schools

NBCT, North Washington Middle School

Academic Discourse is an integral aspect of science instruction where students' ideas become the resources for learning. Students need to experience rich sense-making conversations in order to make sense of complex natural phenomena. This session will explore strategies and tools to assist you in fostering an environment, in person and virtually, of rich academic discourse using some of the STEM teaching tools developed by the UW Institute for Science + Math Education.

Engaging Kids in the Thinking and Wondering of Science, Remotely

Julie A. Moore, Fayette County

4th-6th Grade Science Teacher - SCAPA @Bluegrass

In this session, we will explore how to use question driven science to keep kids engaged and excited during remote instruction. We will explore how to get them involved in thinking and discussing science, as well as supporting them to explore informational text. We will look at how hands-on science is achievable in remote learning and how we can take some of our most interactive in-seat lessons and modify them for maximum engagement remotely.

Breakout #3 | Saturday, February 27 -- 11:45am-12:45pm EST

Supporting All Students Make Sense of Phenomena By Building All of Their Intellectual Resources

Philip Bell, University of Washington

Professor of Education

The Framework for K-11 Science Education vision calls for creating opportunities for ALL students to meaningful engage in sensemaking and learning in science. A culturally responsive approach to instruction highlights the range of intellectual resources that students bring to learning situations based on their cultural histories. Through a series of concrete accounts of learning situations, this session will create opportunities for participants to work with others to ‘learn to see’ students’ sense-making resources—and connect these pedagogical strategies to their classroom practice.

Reading as an Act of Inquiry: The role of engaging with text to learn like a scientist

Lori Norton-Meier, PhD, University of Northern Iowa

Director, Jacobson Center for Comprehensive Literacy

Reading has long played a role in how scientists engage and think about the natural world. In this session, we will explore how reading becomes an act of inquiry in elementary classrooms focused on engaging in an Argument-Based Inquiry (ABI) approach to learning.

Supporting NGSS Crosscutting Concepts with Agent-based Computer Models in High School Classrooms

Dr. Lin Xiang, University of Kentucky

Assistant Professor of Science Education

Agent-based computer models (ABMs) have gained popularity in STEM fields due to their power to investigate dynamic changes in complex systems. Building upon a set of interconnected agents, ABMs can be used to represent patterns, test cause-and-effect mechanisms, construct system models, and reveal stability and changes on different spatial and temporal scales. For example, ABMs have been used to demonstrate short- and long-term changes in an ecosystem, model disease epidemics—such as COVID-19, and explore solutions for contemporary environmental issues. This session presents the pedagogical use of online ABMs in developing high students’ understandings about CCCs and incorporating CCCs in their views of science. In this 1-hour session, teachers will gain knowledge in 1) distinguishing agent-based vs. non-agent-based computer models, 2) identifying the CCCs supported by certain ABMs, and 3) designing ABM-supported mini tasks for high school students.

Using the ERQ Rubric to Gauge Student Understanding

Rae McEntyre, Kentucky Department of Education

Science Consultant

KDE, in partnership with KSTA, have annotated student work samples for classroom-level tasks. These annotations are based upon the science rubric for the ERQ on the K-PREP Science Assessment. This session will share the resource and demonstrate how this rubric can be used with classroom tasks to show teachers where students are in their ability to communicate their understandings of a phenomenon.

Reinforcing Science Vocabulary through Interactive Word Walls (Even Remotely!)

Patti Works, Amplify Professional Learning Specialist

PIMSER Regional Teacher Partner

How can we effectively use interactive word walls to build a strong science vocabulary with your students? Let's take a look at a variety of word wall samples, including digital word walls to project or use in remote sessions, or to send to students with interactive components. Let's discuss strategies that are effective in building vocabulary in a variety of settings.

Keynote | Saturday, February 27 -- 12:50-1:30pm EST

Supporting equity and justice through 3D science instruction: The road travelled and the one ahead

Philip Bell, University of Washington

Professor of Education

All students have the right to develop a deep understanding of how the natural world works in ways that support their personal goals and the interests of their community. Building from the vision in the NRC Framework for K-12 Science Education, I will highlight equity-focused approaches that have been developed that: (a) position learners as knowers and designers, (b) promote cultural relevance around phenomena and student's resulting scientific knowledge, and (c) leverage the full communicative resources of learners. I will also point to future directions for promoting equity and justice through science education. Throughout the session I will share open education resources called STEM Teaching Tools (http://stemteachingtools.org/) designed to support the professional learning of science educators.

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The Kentucky Science Teachers Association is an affiliated chapter of the National Science Teaching Association
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