SciREN annual networking event for STEM teachers

The Scientific Research and Education Network (SciREN) connects local scientists with K-12 educators. Founded by two graduate students, Justin Ridge and Ethan Theuerkauf, from the UNC-Chapel Hill Institute of Marine Sciences, the program is in its second year and has expanded to include students at the Duke University Marine Lab. It also includes members from North Carolina State University.

SciREN’s annual networking event will be held November 13, 2014 at 5:30pm at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh. Scientists will provide K-12 educators with classroom-ready lesson plans that are aligned to the current state and national standards. These lessons explore cutting-edge research of more than sixty local scientists from fifteen institutions. Educators and scientists can also arrange classroom visits and collaborate on curriculum development.

For more information about this wonderful opportunity, please visit the SciREN website. Email questions to sciren.outreach@gmail.com.

SENCER Summer Institute

The National Science Foundation funded Science Education for New Civic Engagement and Responsibilities (SENCER) courses and programs connect STEM content to local, national, and global challenges. Students, teachers, and faculty report that the SENCER approach makes science more accessible, real, and relevant. The program for the Institute will include all-Institute plenary sessions, workshops on effective pedagogies, examples of successful campus and community applications, and opportunities to meet formal and informal educators, administrators, students, and others from across the country interested in contributing to a civically engaged society and the improvement of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education.

UNC Asheville has made special provisions for local Western North Carolina teachers to attend a one-day workshop on August 1, 2014 to enjoy networking opportunities with colleagues from across the country at a private reception, poster presentations, and collaborate on innovative ways to adapt SENCER learning into curriculum. UNC Asheville faculty and others from across the country, educators, and students will be available as resources to assist in making suggestions about the integration of SENCER into curriculum development. More information about the SENCER approach may be found at sencer.net. Lunch is included in this full-day workshop as is participation in a networking reception where teachers will meet colleagues from across the nation who are effectively utilizing the SENCER model.

August 1, 2014 Itinerary
8:00AM – 5:00PM

  • Plenary Address by SENCER Faculty and Students from the U.S. Military Academy
  • Concurrent Sessions
  • Workshop Sessions
  • Complimentary Lunch
  • Team and Group Consultations
  • Poster Presentations

Networking Reception 5:00PM – 6:00PM

The first 15 applicants will have their $100.00 registration fee covered by the SENCER Center for Innovation South. This local-only option is available at https://ncsce.wildapricot.org/NCSCEEvents. Select the “SSI 2014 Local Primary/Secondary Educator – Friday-only” registration option, when prompted. That registration, which must be submitted by June 15, requires a code: SENCER14LocalEducator.

For more information, please contact Susan Reiser.

Changing China: History and culture since 1644

Primary Source, a program that promotes history and humanities in Massachusetts is offering a 10-week online course titled “Changing China: History and Culture Since 1644” from June 13 – August 21, 2012. The complex history of modern China and its unique place on the world stage will be the central focus for this online course, which will explore the period from the Qing Dynasty and the decline of dynastic China to the present day. In addition to the materials presented in Primary Source’s sourcebook China in the World: A History Since 1644, this course will make use of readings, videos, and web-based resources to engage educators in some of the most current scholarship and thinking on China’s development as a nation state. Topics will include the early republic, communist China, economic and political changes, internal migration, arts and literature, and China’s future in an era of globalization.

North Carolina teachers who are interested in taking this course will receive a 20% discount off of the $375 course fee for a total cost of $300. The optional fee for two graduate credits is an additional $200.

Educators can send a registration request to registration@primarysource.org. For more information, please contact Abby Detweiler at abby@primarysource.org.

Free web conference: Differentiation, cognition, and working memory

On Monday, April 4, we’ll host the seventh in our year-long series of free web conferences about differentiated instruction. For this session, we’ll feature Dr. Silvana Watson and Dr. Robert Gable, authors of the article “Using Knowledge of Student Cognition to Differentiate Instruction.”

The presenters will discuss the concept of working memory and how educators can use knowledge of cognition to maximize students’ learning potential. As always, the session will include plenty of time for participants to ask questions.

The web conference takes place Monday, April 4, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Registration is free, and spaces are still available. Sign up for this event, and other conferences in the series, on our web form. For more information on the series of articles and web conferences, check out Reaching Every Learner: Differentiating Instruction in Theory and Practice.

News from the North Carolina Civic Education Consortium

The North Carolina Civic Education Consortium, a program of the School of Government at UNC-Chapel Hill, “works with schools, governments, and community organizations to prepare North Carolina’s young people to be active, responsible citizens.” Each month the Consortium delivers an email newsletter with news and opportunities for civic engagement.

The March newsletter features two lesson plans that were highlighted at the North Carolina Social Studies Conference. The middle grades lesson “explores North Carolina’s rich history of African American leadership and service.” High school students will think about ways to reduce the federal budget in the lesson titled “Get a Pencil! You’re Tackling the National Deficit.”

The Consortium is offering two training opportunities for educators. In addition, they are commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Civil War with a two-day event for 8th grade social studies teachers. This special event is being hosted by the Consortium and the UNC Program in the Humanities and Human Values. The deadline for registration is March 31, 2011.

To read the newsletter, visit the Consortium’s website. To receive the newsletter, contact Anita Buie.

North Carolina Civic Education Consortium’s News for January

The North Carolina Civic Education Consortium, a program of the School of Government at UNC-Chapel Hill, “works with schools, governments, and community organizations to prepare North Carolina’s young people to be active, responsible citizens.” Each month the Consortium delivers an email newsletter with news and opportunities for civic engagement.

This month, the newsletter features an end-of-course review for high school Civics and Economics. Each of the North Carolina Standard Course of Study goals are represented with an end-of-course practice test and sample questions. Lesson plans for both middle and high school classes honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. this month.  Also highlighted for middle grades classrooms is a lesson about the Lumbee Indians and the battle of Hayes Pond in Maxton, North Carolina.

The January newsletter also includes information on grants, professional development workshops, trainings, and teacher institutes. In addition, there are two civic education contests available for student participation.

To read the newsletter, visit the Consortium’s website. To receive the newsletter, contact Anita Buie.

The Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poets Series

The Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poets Series lets students in middle school, high school, college, and adults not currently enrolled in a literary program to be mentored for four to six months on a dozen pages of their original poetry by a Distinguished North Carolina poet. The program is in its eighth successful year with wonderful reviews by past participants.

The deadline for application is November 1, 2010. The mentoring begins in November 2010 and lasts until April 2011 when readings by the student poets and Distinguished Poets are held at colleges or universities in the regions. In addition, the North Carolina Center for the Book hosts poetry readings of each participant (accompanied by their Distinguished Poet) in the public library of the student poet’s home town.

See below for the contact persons. For submission tips and guidelines see the Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poet Series website.

Distinguished Poet by region

Eastern North Carolina: Dr. John Hoppenthaler, Asst. Professor of English and Creative Writing at East Carolina University. Contact person for the east is Dr. Becky Godwin, Chairperson, 252-399-6364.

Central North Carolina: Dr. Rebecca Gould Gibson, Associate Professor of English, 1989 – 2008, Guilford College. The contact person for central North Carolina is Dr. Ted Wojtasik, Chairperson, Faculty in English and Writing, St. Andrews Presbyterian College, 910-277-3948.

Western North Carolina: To be announced. The contact person for the west is Dr. Catherine Carter, Chairperson, Ph.D. Asst. Professor of English Education, 828-227-3931.

Take a personal field trip this summer with Discover NC!

Now that school is out and you’ve got more free time, it’s a great time to visit some of the beautiful and historic sites North Carolina has to offer. Discover NC! is LEARN NC’s guide to local educational resources throughout North Carolina.

Discover NC! will help you find nearby museums, working farms, art galleries, historical sites, Indian villages, and much more. Search for trip opportunities by county, or within a certain number of miles of your ZIP code. In addition, each county’s page now includes multimedia and text resources for teaching about your county.

Use Discover NC! to scout possible field trip opportunities for the coming year, or just plan a weekend outing for your family. For more information please visit the Discover NC! page on the LEARN NC website.

Difference-making professional development from LEARN NC

LEARN NC provides relevant, inclusive, research-based online professional development for teachers. According to end-of-course surveys, course participants overwhelmingly felt LEARN NC online courses were relevant to their jobs, and made them feel like they were part of a learning community.

What does that mean? Several research studies have linked effective professional development with student achievement. If training directly relates to a teacher’s subject and focuses on how students learn, it translates into better student performance.

Download our new flyer to learn how LEARN NC professional development can make a difference in your teaching. To find a course for you, please visit our Open for Enrollment page.

NC-MSEN Statewide Institute for Teaching Excellence offers workshops for K-12 teachers

Registration is open for three professional development workshops developed by the North Carolina Mathematics and Science Education Network. These workshops are designed to deepen participants’ science content knowledge and to strengthen their ability to encourage inquiry. Participants will examine misconceptions, reflect together on instructional strategies designed to engage young students.

Each session lasts nine days (five days in the summer and four days during the 2010-2011 school year) and focuses on the major science themes in the North Carolina Standard Course of Study for its particular grade levels. These sessions will also emphasize the authentic integration of literacy, mathematics, and technology.

SITE: K-2 Science

June 21 – 25, 2010 plus four days to be scheduled during the 2010-2011 school year, 8:30 – 4:00 daily at the North Carolina School of Science and Math in Durham, NC.

  • Earth Systems (weather features, Earth materials, and solar energy)
  • Force and Matter (properties of matter, energy, properties of force)
  • Living Organisms (needs of organisms, cycles of life, variety of organisms)

SITE: 3-5 Science

June 21 – 25, 2010 (NCSSM) plus four days to be scheduled during the 2010-2011 school year, 8:30 – 4:00 daily at the North Carolina School for Science and Math in Durham, NC. Content will include:

  • Rock Cycle (soil properties, composition/uses of rocks and minerals and landforms)
  • Ecology (plant growth and adaptations, animal behavior and adaptations, and interdependence of plants and animals)
  • Energy/Forces (light, heat, magnetism and electricity, and forces and motion)
  • Weather and Climate (wind direction & speed, precipitation, cloud cover, air pressure, weather patterns, influence of geography on weather)

Assessment in science and managing science materials also will be included in this institute.

SITE: 6-8 Science

June 28 – July 2, 2010 plus four days to be scheduled during the 2010-2011 school year, 8:30 – 4:00 daily at the North Carolina School for Science and Math in Durham. Topics included in this institute are:

  • Life Systems (human body, microbiology, pandemics)
  • Earth Systems (hydrology, lithosphere, and population dynamics)

Assessment in science and managing science materials also will be included in this institute.
Registration information

  • Registration deadline: May 1, 2010
  • CEUs — for each session educators will earn 5.4 CEUs for 9 days
  • Cost — $100/day ($900 total) for teachers residing on NCSSM campus or $85/day ($765 total) for commuters. Breakfast and lunch included for residents; lunch included for commuters. Four days of instruction are scheduled during the school year; teachers need substitutes to attend the two Friday/Saturday sessions at NCSSM.
  • Tuition Waiver — For teachers serving in schools designated as Low Performing or Priority on the NC Report Card, grant funds will be applied and the tuition will be waived. Teachers qualifying for the grant must pay a $25 registration fee.
  • Support from the grant does not cover the cost for substitutes for teachers attending instructional days during the school year.

To register, follow this link to the registration process. Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis, and seats are limited.

For more information, contact Carole Stern, (stern at ncssm dot edu), (919) 416-2635.