Category Archives: Teacher

Reminder: AMS DataStreme Courses

Just a reminder, Fall semester is ending and we are now signing people up for the Spring Semester.

American Meteorological Society DataStreme courses are great way to get some background on Atmosphere, Climate and Ocean.   It creates opportunities to be an earth science leader and local expert in your school, district, and state. Materials not only invigorate your own confidence in teaching these topics, but also align with the NGSS Disciplinary Core Ideas for Earth and Space Science, specifically ESS2.C, ESS2.D, ESS3.B, ESS3.C, and ESS3.D. Addresses NGSS Crosscutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause and Effect, Energy and Matter, Systems and System Models, Stability and Change. Below is information for all Teachers:

DataStreme Courses begins its Spring Semester on Monday, January 20th 2020.

Calling all educators, both classroom and informal! Are you interested in adding to your curriculum to meet STEM standards? The American Meteorological Society (AMS) offers an on-line course for K-12 teachers to help you brush up on your atmospheric science. The course will increase your understanding of important earth science concepts while leveraging a dedicated mentoring team of education and scientific experts throughout the semester-long graduate courses. The mentor/coaching model allows you individual feedback on challenging material and the opportunity to leverage relationships for future collaboration

Successful participants will receive three (3) hours of graduate credit in science through California University of Pennsylvania. The main cost to you (besides the academic fee) is your time – time to complete the weekly investigations. This course will require 4 to 6 hours of focused work each week depending on your science background and experience.

For additional information, please visit the DataStreme Course website 

PLEASE NOTE:  If you are interested in participating in a DataStreme course during the next academic semester (currently Spring 2020) and are are not already in touch with one of our Mentor Teams, please fill out this Google Form.

 

For more information, please contact Diane Ripollone

Work: dripollone@cghsnc.org

Home: rippie77@nc.rr.com

Diane Ripollone

NC Mentor Team Leader

AMS Opportunity Spring 2020

Sorry for such a long time between posts. For those who subscribe I’m really sorry, don’t want to waste your time. Hopefully as we get towards the holidays and vacation, I can update the blog. I do have some things to talk about that have come to pass.

If you are interested in anything I post feel free to contact me. Today I’m notifying everyone that AMS DataStreme Course interest is open. If you are interested in improving your knowledge on Meteorology, Climate or Oceans check out the information below:

American Meteorological Society DataStreme courses are great way to get some background on Atmosphere, Climate and Ocean.   It creates opportunities to be an earth science leader and local expert in your school, district, and state. Materials not only invigorate your own confidence in teaching these topics, but also align with the NGSS Disciplinary Core Ideas for Earth and Space Science, specifically ESS2.C, ESS2.D, ESS3.B, ESS3.C, and ESS3.D. Addresses NGSS Crosscutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause and Effect, Energy and Matter, Systems and System Models, Stability and Change. Below is information for North Carolina Teachers, however anyone can use this information to find your LIT Mentor in your area.

DataStreme Courses begins its Spring Semester on Monday, January 20th 2020.

Calling all educators, both classroom and informal! Are you interested in adding to your curriculum to meet STEM standards? The American Meteorological Society (AMS) offers an on-line course for K-12 teachers to help you brush up on your atmospheric science. The course will increase your understanding of important earth science concepts while leveraging a dedicated mentoring team of education and scientific experts throughout the semester-long graduate courses. The mentor/coaching model allows you individual feedback on challenging material and the opportunity to leverage relationships for future collaboration

The total cost of DataStreme Courses for the 2019/20 academic year is $450/semester (only $350 for AMS members; note that K–12 teacher annual membership in the Society is $58 per year). The DataStreme course fee covers all course materials including textbooks, university academic fees, as well as the three tuition-free graduate credits per course. The fee is nonrefundable. Instructions on paying the course fee will be distributed after acceptance to the course. By leveraging grant funding, each DataStreme course costs participants a fraction of total value of over $1900 per semester.

This really is a deal when you think about the credits you are receiving. Also it makes you eligible to go on their summer PD

Successful participants will receive three (3) hours of graduate credit in science through California University of Pennsylvania. The main cost to you (besides the academic fee) is your time – time to complete the weekly investigations. This course will require 4 to 6 hours of focused work each week depending on your science background and experience.

For additional information, please visit the DataStreme Course website 

PLEASE NOTE:  If you are interested in participating in a DataStreme course during the next academic semester (currently Spring 2020) and are are not already in touch with one of our Mentor Teams, please fill out this Google Form The first day of the spring semester of DATASTREME ATMOSPHERE is

For more information, please contact Diane Ripollone

Work: dripollone@cghsnc.org

Home: rippie77@nc.rr.com

Diane Ripollone

NC Mentor Team Leader

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The year begins!! 2019

Happy New Year! Another year done and now we head into the last leg of the school year. A lot will be happening in the next couple of the months. After thinking about all that is going on, I think I’ll be just a bit busy.

First, we are rolling out our Mars Rover this month. Hopefully we will name it this month, then we will bring it to NC Museum of Natural Science for Astronomy Weekend. It’s going to be a great weekend for all, the Rover Team and Robotics Team will be running the exhibit. A combination of robots and Mars map will make our exhibit one to remember. (By the way Astronomy Weekend is January 26th and 27th at the NC Museum of Natural Science in Raleigh).

Next our Robotics team is going be competing in their first Qualifier, so the next couple of weeks will be hectic with getting the Robot ready. By the way the challenge is called Rover Rukus and fits in well with our Rover. Check out the challenge at the First Tech website.

And of course, there is the daily classes to prepare for. I think I sometimes make more work for myself. I’ve discussed this with my colleagues. Instead of going with the lesson I always must change it. But my classes aren’t the same every year. And I’m always looking to improve to the lessons. Isn’t that what teaching being about also?

But of course, I also have to get involved in other things, like the Blogging Challenge sent out by A.J. Juliani, I tried to do this once before it started out great then went downhill. So, I’m trying it again. With all that’s going on I figure this year I can do this! Anyway, one of the benefits is that I get to read some great blogs by people.  And one of them is my colleagues who started blogging for the new year. Check out her blog. She’s a great Physics teacher and has some awesome things happening in class.

By the way if you are interested in naming the Rover, check out twitter @rippie77 with the Hastag #GibbonsMarsRover. And so the year begins!

10 tips I wish I knew as a First Year Teacher | Authentic Teacher Audioblog Episode 18 — Authentic Teacher

10 tips I wish I knew when I first started teaching way back in 2003 or even sooner!

via 10 tips I wish I knew as a First Year Teacher | Authentic Teacher Audioblog Episode 18 — Authentic Teacher

NatGeo Educators

Student Work

Recently I was honored to be interviewed for the NatGeo Educator Spotlight. They interviewed me about my capstone I did for them on their certification. You can read about their certification National Geographic Certification.  I’m always a bit hesitant of being interviewed, but it turned out okay and I’m happy to have shared my project with everyone.

Now for the project I’m not sure if I did write about the project in the past. But as you read through the interview you will get an idea what’s about. I used the Book reading project we do in class and integrated the maps from National Geographic. During the year I give a book reading project, students in class read Rocket Boys and Hidden Figures. Two great books by the way. Students are given a schedule for reading, I would recommend this, I found it helpful for the students. My sophomores knew exactly what pages they had to have done by a certain date. Feedback from students indicated this kept them on track, even for my Honors class.

Rocket Boys Book Project

When completing their reading they had to answer questions on a google form and then they were to create a presentation answering the questions posted on the assignment sheet. I changed things up a bit, by choosing different groups to present after each section was completed. I decided the year after I had implemented this project, I would adjust it and assign the “Hidden Figures” book. Last year was the first year we did both books. The only changes I’m going to make for next  year is I will assign this project in the 2nd Semester. I’m flipping the Genius Hour project with this project.

West Virg

To enhance the Rocket Boys Project I used National Geographic Maps and Mapmaker.  Basically the goal of the lesson was to get students to understand the different resources (geological)  in each state. Using the maps the students needed to create a legend and indicate on the maps the resources and geology of the states. During the activity we highlighted West Virginia and Coal Mining. Integrating some of the readings from Rocket Boys. They also learned about their own state and its resources.  Feedback from the students was great, they gave some ideas on how to improve the activity.  

The project was my capstone for the certification. I would recommend the program to anyone who would like to become a part of the NatGeo Education community.

For those of you who are interested here are the National Standards I addressed with this project: HS-ESS3-1 Earth and Human Activity and HS-ESS3-3 Earth and Human Activity.

National Geographic Education Twitter: @NatGeoEducation

 

Infiniscope Advisory Group

So I began a new opportunity this year, I joined an advisory board. Not something I thought I would be interested in or want to do. But I couldn’t pass up this opportunity. I applied and was accepted on the Infiniscope Advisory board. Infiniscope is a project created by ASU and part of the NASA’s Science Mission Directorate.  The website is host to a number of interactive lessons that are being beta tested. Since being picked to be on the board I had the opportunity to test a lesson from the website; Celestial Jukebox. I thought it was really great how it used sound/music to help understand Kepler Laws. Students used music to try and figure out the patterns exhibited by planets in different orbits. It’s really cool way of explaining Kepler Laws, plus it addresses NGSS 3D learning. The Teacher’s Lesson guide does a good job of guiding you through the lesson.

I’m impressed by the other lessons that appear on the website. The opportunity to be a part of this advisory board has opened up new opportunities to learn about new lessons and also learn more about NGSS 3D learning. We recently reviewed  a lesson with the NGSS rubric. I’ve never used the rubric before so this was a new experience for me. The rubric addresses the 3 Dimensional learning of the Next Generation standards. The EQulP Rubric lists various criteria that review a lesson.

The purpose of the rubric and review process is to: (1) review existing lessons and units to determine what revisions are needed; (2) provide constructive criterion-based feedback and suggestions for improvement to developers; (3) identify examples/models for teachers’ use within and across states; and (4) to inform the development of new lessons, units, and other instructional materials. 

We used this to review a lesson that is being Beta tested on the Infiniscope website. I learned a lot through the process, it started to get me thinking about my lessons and how they would stand up to this scrutiny.  It’s a good guide to use when creating a lesson if your district or state has adopted the NGSS.

If your interested in the lessons on the Infinscope feel free to use the link in this post to get to the website. Check out the information below about the research they are doing to find other topics for interactive lessons.

The Infiniscope Digital Teaching Network is seeking your help! Infiniscope is based out of Arizona State University and funded by NASA. Infiniscope specializes in creating digital learning experiences around NASA data and visualizations that are tightly aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards and are built for all audiences. We are inviting you, to share your personal experience with simulations you have used with your audiences (in and out of the classroom) or ones you wish you could find to reach students struggling with the content you are trying to communicate. 

 

Your participation in this study will involve the completion of a Qualtrics survey using the provided link below. This survey will take approximately 5-10 minutes. By completing the questionnaire, you will be entered in a drawing to win one of four Amazon gift cards. Survey closes April 30th and winners will be named May 1st.

 

If you would like to participate, please click the link below to take the survey. The survey will be available until April 30, 2018 at https://asu.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_9NZQUnMGIHa6ARL

 

Thank you so much for your willingness to assist us with this important area of research!

 

 

Designing Group Projects So That Everyone Participates – John Spencer

Collaborative projects can easily fall apart in the classroom. You start with a great idea but next thing you know, you have half of your students checked out. So, how do we fix this?   Listen to

Source: Designing Group Projects So That Everyone Participates – John Spencer

After listening to the podcasts I’m rethinking my group projects. How do you get all parties involved in the project? Buy in? How do you get students to own the process? John Spencer does a great job in giving teachers ideas how how to do this. But obviously each classroom is different, and something that works for me might not work for you. And there will always be that one or two students you just can’t get to work. Its frustrating I know, but its one of the things Teachers have to accept, its called “human behavior” (well that’s what I think). The classroom can’t be perfect.

 “It’s complicated, John Spencer says and its because kids are complicated”.

I know the projects that are successful in my classroom are the one’s that students are engaged and have ownership. “Creative Collaboration”, definitely agree here with John Spencer. Our earthquake towers are one of the most successful projects we do in class. Students take ownership and work together on building something.

I’m definitely taking some of John Spencer’s suggestions and implementing them in the some of my projects in class.

Thank You Mr. Spencer great article!

 

Freedom to Learn — User Generated Education

I was painfully bored during my K-12 education. I looked forward to college anticipating that it would be different – more engaging, more interesting, more innovative. I was wrong. My undergraduate education, except for a few bright spots, was just an extension of my K-12 education including more grill and drill with sages on the […]

via Freedom to Learn — User Generated Education

Below are just a couple of quotes from the blog post that I truly appreciate. I’m not interested in reading this book. Carl Rogers, Freedom to Learn.

Much significant learning is acquired through doing. “Placing the student in direct experiential confrontation with practical problems, social problems, ethical and philosophical problems, personal issues, and research problems, is one of the most effective modes of promoting learning” (p. 162).

One cannot measure the difference in attitude, the increased interest, the growing pride in self-improvement, but one is aware that they exist. (Rogers, 1969, p. 19)

Part II “5 Summer Secrets…”

5 Summer Secrets to a stress- free fall

This is a continuation from the previous post.

5 summer stress free secrets include tools to help you make a plan to complete tasks during the summer that will make your year less stressful. An example, the first question the challenge or plan asks is “What do you want your life to like when school starts again? So, what do I want my life to look like when school starts again? Good question. Well stress free of course.  I wanted to have first quarter ready to go, or my plans completed. I want to be prepared. When we get back to school I always feel like I’m not prepared for school.

So to keep up with this vision and Ms. Watson’s challenge for the summer, I signed up for email notifications. Her 5 Summer Secrets started with number one “Eliminate unintentional breaks”. This is common sense, meaning be to be more productive you must task manage. By straying from your work, you create an environment that wastes time and you don’t complete your tasks. Sounds familiar, yep sounds like the kids. Keep them on task. Well what about the teachers? I  find myself doing this especially during the school day.  I start one project and end up straying from that task, going down a rabbit hole as they say. Eventually that project takes me a lot longer.  According Angela Watson we take unintentional breaks. So, she talks about how you need set a break later and work for a good amount time doing one thing. An example is I’ve decided that I should work through my planning period grading  and not go off on a tangent doing something else. Hopefully this will give me some solid time to complete some tasks.

Second  “secret” is avoid “task-Switching”.  Work ahead and avoid task-switching, which I’ve caught myself doing many times. You need to batch together similar tasks and stay on task. Don’t allow yourself to stray from those tasks. Again, sound familiar. I find there are times where I’m working on something, I’ll stray away and go on to something else. So, what happens I’m unproductive and end up not getting what I need done. Seems all commons sense right? well then why do we end up not following that common sense. Got me, but I tried to correct that this summer.

The third “secret”, use scheduling to create your boundaries around time. I found this to be very helpful. I scheduled different tasks I needed to get done during the summer on certain days and hours. When I did this, and followed the plan I got a ton of stuff done. For example, on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings I would work on lesson plans. When I kept to the plan it worked and I got a lot things done. Once I strayed from the plan, well let’s just say very little got done.

Number Four on the list is “Figure out the main thing and do it first”. So, what is the most important or main thing you need to get done this summer. Or, which is the most urgent and an overwhelmingly large task that you need to do.  My main task would be my lesson plans and activities. I know, summer is almost over, but this does work during the year also. The most important tasks need to be done first. Make a list, put the most important at the top of the list.

The last secret is to look “for innovative ways to relax any standards that create unnecessary work”. Look for ways to make things easier on yourself this year. Relax and say no to unnecessary work. Look for activities or assignments from another teacher. Adapt them to your class but don’t reinvent the wheel. If something didn’t work last year, then change it to suit your class, or don’t do the assignment. With this one I have a tendency to create an assignment that is a lot more intricate then has to be. More work for me. Simplify things, let the students take control of their learning. This is where Blended Learning and Flipped Learning comes in. Collaborate with another teacher to make things a bit easier on yourself. All good advice, that I sometimes must admit I forget.

When I followed this advice, I felt good about the beginning of the year. I still do even though I strayed a bit. This is great advice and does work. Try it. I know the summer is coming to an end, but some of this can still be done during the year. I would advise you subscribe to Ms. Watson’s newsletter and podcasts, she really does have some great advice.

Anglea Watson The Cornerstone for teachers