The STATellite (February 2010)

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Volume 54, Number 1

February 2010


CAST Call for Proposals STAT Board Nominees

The Official Newsletter of the Science Teachers Association of Texas 1

About Us We are STAT, the Science Teachers Association of Texas. STAT is committed to the enhancement of the teaching of science in Texas at all levels and in all science disciplines. For STAT Position Statements, go to: STAT is: o A statewide organization of elementary, middle level, and high school teachers, college educators, supervisors of science, and others dedicated to maintaining the highest levels of science and education in our schools. o A chapter of the National Science Teachers Association o Visit the NSTA site STAT seeks to: o Serve as a unified voice for the science teachers of the state. o Keep science teachers and other members informed about current trends in science education. o Provide opportunities for members to examine techonology, curriculum, materials, and services. o Inform members of local, state and national meetings, conferences, seminars and workshops related to sciences. o Cooperate with other science oriented organizations and teacher associations in the promotion of teaching of science. History: STAT, Science Teachers Association of Texas, was formally organized in 1957 during the 4th Annual Conference for the Advancement of Science & Mathematics Teaching (CASMT). STAT membership is more than 6,000 strong!

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Contacts Elected Officers ............................................4 Appointed Positions ....................................4 Affiliate Congress ........................................5 Regional Directors .......................................6 Texas State Board of Education..................7 Calendar..............................................................8 Regional Reports ...............................................9 Affiliate News ..................................................14 CAST 2010 Call for Proposals.......................17 STAT Officer Elections 2010 ..........................18 National Lab Day ............................................25 Open Letter to the SBOE and Commissioner Scott........................................26 Continuing Education ....................................28


Elected Officers

STAT Office Mailing Address: 5750 Balcones Dr., Ste 201 Austin, TX 78731 Phone: (512) 491-6685 Fax: (512) 873-7423

President: Patsy Magee

Past President: Michael Baldwin

President-Elect: Joel Palmer

Treasurer: Laurel Frank

Vice President: Ross Ann Hill

Secretary: Karen Jo Matsler

(409) 617-5054

(972) 882-7388

(806) 892-1900

(956) 548-8246

(281) 232-2025

(817) 483-7251

Appointed Positions

Executive Director: Chuck Hempstead (512) 491-6685

CAST Exhibits Manager & Advertising Manager: Frank Butcher (281)424-1230

TEA Representative: Kenn Heydrick

(512) 463-1827 4

Texas Science Teacher Editor: Joel Palmer (972) 882-7388

STATellite Editor: Jon Rodriguez (512) 491-6685


Associated Chemistry Teachers of Texas Rhonda Alexander



Informal Science Education Association Kiki Corry



Integrated Science Educators of Texas

Texas Association of Biology Teachers

Texas Association for Environmental Education

Carole Henry

Karen Hewitt

Sally Wall




Texas Council of Elementary Science Michael Vu

Texas Earth Science Teachers Association Diann Valentine


Texas Marine Educators Association Marolyn Smith


Texas Section of the American Association of Physics Teachers

Texas Science Education Leadership Association

Hugh Henderson

Terry Talley


Region 6

Georgeanna Adams-Molina 3332 Montgomery Rd. Huntsville, TX 77340 E-mail

Region 7

Donna Wise 1909 N. Longview Street Kilgore, TX 75662 E-mail

Region 1

Robert A. Soper 300 Hollywood Dr. Edinburg, TX 75839 E-mail

Region 2

Region 9

Region 17

Region 3

Region 10

Region 4

Co-Region 5

Mike Hoke 1802 W Rein Orange, TX 77630 E-mail

Co-Region 5

Roxanne Minix-Wilkins 1130 Skipwith St. Beaumont, TX 77705 E-mail

Region 16

Vacant Tanys Gene James 1625 Rodgers Dr. Graham, TX 76450 E-mail

Mary Ingle 7145 W. Tidwell Road Houston, TX 77092-2096 E-mail

Region 15

Jerita Taylor P.O. Box 390 Bronte, TX 76933 E-mail Bobbette Doerrie 13925 CR B Booker, TX 79005 E-mail

Lola Grundy 15222 Reales Drive Corpus Christi, TX 78418 E-mail Catherine W. Porter 308 Welch Palacios, TX 77465 E-mail


Region 8

Region 14

Gary Mabry 2110 Marsalis St. Abilene, TX 79603 E-mail

Bill Neal 6231 Woodcrest Ln Dallas, TX 75214 E-mail

Region 11

Becky Yarbrough 3001 North Freeway Fort Worth, Tx 76106 E-mail

Region 12

Jeanine Wolf 3680 CR 269 Oglesby, TX 76561 E-mail

Region 13

Dr. Barbara ten Brink 1410 W. 29th Street Austin, TX 78703 E-mail

Cathy Box P.O. Box 698 Tahoka, TX 79373 E-mail

Region 18

Martha Alexander 5006 Castleford Rd. Midland, TX 79705 E-mail

Region 19

James and Dusty Milson 252 Viking El Paso, TX 79912 E-mail

Region 20

Mary Poarch 1425 Wilshire Ave. San Antonio, TX 78209 E-mail

Region 21

Shari Hiltbrand 1330 Augusta #20 Houston, TX 77057 E-mail

Gail Lowe, Chair Lawrence A. Allen, Jr., Vice Chair Terri Leo, Secretary SBOE District 1 - Rene Nuñez 1521 Upson Dr. El Paso, TX 79902 (915) 351-9923 (512) 936-4319 fax

SBOE District 2 - Mary Helen Berlanga 2727 Morgan Ave. Corpus Christi, TX 78405 (361) 881-1000 (361) 881-1028 fax

SBOE District 3- Rick Agosto 205 N Presa, Ste B 200 San Antonio, TX 78205 (210) 226-7106 (210) 226-7104 fax

William B. Travis Building 1701 North Congress Avenue Austin, Texas 78701-1494

SBOE District 9 - Don McLeroy

9277 Brookwater Cir. College Station, TX 77845 (979) 255-2538 (979) 846-1174 fax

SBOE District 10 - Cynthia Nolan Dunbar

22123 Skyridge Ln. Richmond, TX 77469 (512) 463-9007 (512) 936-4319 fax

SBOE District 11 - Patricia Hardy 900 N. Elm Weatherford, TX 76086 (817) 598-2968 (817) 598-2833 fax

SBOE District 4 - Lawrence A. Allen, Jr.

SBOE District 12 - Geraldine Miller

SBOE District 5- Ken Mercer

SBOE District 13 - Mavis B. Knight

4302 Grapevine Houston, TX 77045 (713) 433-4643 (713) 556-7243 fax

PO Box 781301 San Antonio, TX 78278 (512) 463-9007 (512) 936-7319 fax

SBOE District 6 - Terri Leo 23516 Twin Oaks Dr. RR#5 Spring, TX 77389 (281) 257-0832 fax (call first)

SBOE District 7 - David Bradley 2165 North St. Beaumont, TX 77701 (409) 835-3808

SBOE District 8 - Barbara Cargill 61 W. Wedgemere Cir. The Woodlands, TX 77381 (281) 465-8095

1100 Providence Tower West Dallas, TX 75244 (972) 419-4000 (214) 552-8560 fax PO Box 763337 Dallas, TX 75376 (214) 333-9575 (214) 339-9242 fax

SBOE District 14 - Gail Lowe

11 Chris Ave. Lampasas, TX 76550 (512) 556-6262 (512) 556-3278 fax

SBOE District 15 - Bob Craig

PO Box 1979 Lubbock, TX 79408 (806) 744-3232 (806) 744-2211 fax

Need to find your representative? Search by zip code at: 7

November 2010 CAST 2010 November 11 - 13, 2010 Houston, TX NSTA Area Conference November 11 - 13, 2010 Baltimore, MD

February 2010 Region 4 Mini-CAST February 20, 2010 Houston, Texas

March 2010 NSTA National Conference March 18 - 21, 2010 Philadelphia, PA

July 2010 TESTA Iceland Trip July 19 - 25, 2010 Iceland

October 2010 Rio Grande Valley Science Conference October 9 - 10, 2010 Mercedes, TX NSTA Area Conference October 28 - 30. 2010 Kansas City, MO


National Lab Day November 23, 2010

Regional Reports Region IV by Mary Ingle, Region IV Director

The second annual Region 4 Science Conference will be held on February 20, 2010 at the William McKinney Conference Center at Region 4 from 8:00 am–3:30 pm. The conference theme is “Gaining Momentum in Science Literacy”. Sessions are available for all grades and science courses in elementary school, middle school, and high school. Presentation Themes:  Biology  Chemistry  Earth Science  Environmental Science  Life Science  Physics

 General Science  Instructional Strategies  Science Process Skills  Science, Technology, Society  Special Populations in Science  Statewide Assessment

Registration fee is $80.00 (includes all conference materials) To register online, visit, click on “Professional Development,” and enter Session ID number 430889.


Regional Reports Region X & XI by Kevin Fisher

The Metroplex Mini-CAST was held on January 23, 2010 at Heritage High School in Colleyville, Texas. This is the 15th consecutive year for the Metroplex Mini-CAST sponsored by the Metroplex Area Science Supervisors group. Once again the event was a resounding success. Approximately 700 people attend the event including 525 attendees, 106 presenters, 41 vendors, and 30 volunteers from the Metroplex Area Science Supervisors group. This Mini-CAST is larger than many state science conferences. Throughout the day, over 100 different sessions were presented. Between sessions, attendees perused vendor booths to see the latest offerings. Lunch was provided to all attendees, vendors, presenters, and volunteers. One of the highlights of the Metroplex Mini-CAST is the various door prizes. This year the door prizes included four scholarships to attend CAST in Houston. Four lucky individuals will be attending CAST courtesy of the Metroplex Mini-CAST. This year’s winners were Truett Austin, Shawn Mondlach, Lauren Avery, and David Downing. In addition to informative sessions, vendor exhibits, door prizes the Mini-CAST recruited 178 new members to STAT. The purposes of the Mini-CAST are to provide the latest in instructional methodology, creative activities, networking opportunities, and most importantly, supporting STAT by recruiting new members. These goals were all accomplished. We hope to see even more people at the 2011 Metroplex Mini-CAST. Sincerely Kevin Fisher Director



Regional Reports Region XV by Jerita Taylor

Region XV Robotics Competition At Regional, the 1st place team was Linsey Arellano and Garrett Rogers.

At Area, since Garrett and Bailey failed, the teams consisted of Linsey Arellano, Erika Sheldon as 1st place with Luke Sheldon, and Jorge Rostro in second place. The boys missed by 1 point. Also at Regional one of my elementary teams won 1st place. The team consisted of Matthew Curry, Kaleb Torres, and Trace Oleksiuk. This was their first time in Robotics.

Second place was Jorge Rostro, Luke Sheldon and Bailey Smith.

They kind of learned a lesson this year in “do not mess with something that works.� They thought they needed to improve their robot and did not place at area.


Regional Reports As far as State, all four of my secondary teams qualified. The teams are:

Team 1 Linsey Arellano Erika Sheldon Garrett Rogers*

Team 2 Jorge Rostro Luke Sheldon Bailey Smith*

*If a passing grade is maintained

Sponsored by:


Celeste Service Denise Roberts Sandy Sawyer

Team 3 (Mix of Jr. & Sr. High) James Roberts Drew Davis Zachary Sanchez

Team 4 (Strictly Jr. High) Tristen Hildebrand J. R. Aldridge Mason Hill

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Affiliate News Texas Earth Science Teachers Association TESTA by Diann Valentine As we continue to celebrate our 25th Anniversary, the Texas Earth Science Teachers, TESTA, would like to invite you to help us make this an even more stellar year for the comeback of Earth Science to our educational curriculum. Participation and contribution are vital elements in the success for our students. You can make a difference in your knowledge as well as share your insights during this year. To increase your field base experience, TESTA is offering a spring conference “Texas – Underground!” It will be held April 9-11 at the Sonora Caverns. Arrive Friday night to stay at the Days Inn to visit with new and old friends as we begin the conference the next morning. Click here for a conference flyer. The four Saturday sessions include: • Underground Classroom – Cavern Formation & Speleology, Preservation, Cave Biology, Texas Geology, and Fossils. • Orienteering – Compass and Map reading, Pacing, GPS Technology, Geo-caching, and Topographic Mapping. • Hydrology – Groundwater, Texas Aquifers, Water Testing, and Conservation. • Caverns of Sonora – Tour of the spectacular caverns and photo opportunities. Sunday morning activities include TEXAS Rocks! – Geologic Puzzles, Steno’s Laws, Relative Dating, Road Cuts and Fossil Collecting. (Texas Room & Road cuts between Sonora & Junction. To maximize and personalize your experience these optional activities are offered:


• Discovery Challenge (Maximum of 8 participants) for Off trail caving and rapelling – 4 hours - $125.00/person • Single Rope Technique and Cave Safety – Ascending and Climbing - $7.00/person • Eaton Hall Wildlife Sanctuary – self guided tour. (free) Conference fee of $150 includes two nights hotel - double occupancy, all meals on Saturday and Sunday morning, and all conference activities except optional Sunday activities. Transportation is not included. Visit our website for registration form. Contact Kathryn Barclay at 281.460.2026 for further information, TESTA looks forward to seeing you there. Also TESTA is offering again Iceland July 19-25, 2009! We were lucky to have the renowned Ari Trausti sign on again as tour guide. He did an outstanding job for those of us that attended last year. It is a trip of a lifetime for geology lovers. Call Charles Swift at 806.535.6017 for the latest information. Also check our website about both of these professional development opportunities.

Affiliate News Texas Association of Biology Teachers TABT by Karen Hewitt TABT had a great turnout at CAST 2009. Our strand workshops were full. Our short courses were sold out. Thanks to our presenters – Debbie Richards, Jennifer Jordan-Kaszuba, Gina Disteldorf, Joy Killough, Eugene Chiappetta and Robert Dennison – for their hard work and support of the TABT strand. We are currently looking for strand presenters for CAST 2010 in Houston. If you are interested in presenting a workshop or short course in the TABT strand, please contact Karen Hewitt or Sarah Anderson. Robert Dennison spoke at the TABT luncheon on his experiences as Charles Darwin. Robert has had some interesting experiences when he is portraying Darwin, including being given full access at Down House, Darwin’s home. Robert was also a part of the Darwin Houston 2009 program. TABT is planning a trip to Alaska June 27 – July 5, 2010 through Holbrook Tours. The fully guided adventure is designed to highlight on the most naturally beautiful regions in the country, allowing for an up-close and personal Alaskan experience. Explore the Copper River Delta and pass under the branches of old-growth hemlock and spruce on a walk through Chugach National Forest on the edge of Prince William Sound. Land pricing is $2029 for double occupancy and $1889 for triple occupancy. These are land prices only. If you are interested, you can check it out on the TABT website or contact Holbrook ( 1-800-451-7111.

Also in the news, Alton Biggs recently returned from a trip to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He presented a staff development for about 130 science supervisors from Saudi Arabia and some from the Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Jordan. He thought the workshop participants were like our department chairs or district supervisors, but he later found out they were more like state supervisors and his workshop was an international conference. Because he had to have an interpreter for the sessions, the pace was slow. Everything he said had to be translated to the audience and their comments had to be translated back to him. One day was spent on strategies for differentiating instruction, one day on correction of preconceptions and misconceptions in biology, one day modeling an effective lesson, and one day on problems in the classroom. He reports he received a standing ovation on the last day from both the men and the women who were in separate rooms. The women viewed him on television. The Under Secretary to the Minister of Education told Alton he had heard only good things about his work during the week, and he was going to invite him back next year.


ision ter


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Call for Proposals We’re looking for the best ANOMALIES, DISCOVERIES and THEORIES! Think you have what it takes to take science education to the next level? Do you know how to engage, enlighten and inspire your students? Are you ready to share these methods with colleagues from all over Texas? Then we want you to help make this CAST the BEST ever! The time has come for you to send in your best science teaching lessons, tips, and tricks to CAST 2010: Science in the City. We are now accepting proposal applications for workshops, short courses, and field trips. Submit your ideas from now until April 16th for the chance to be an important part of CAST 2010. We are now accepting proposal applications for workshops, short courses and field trips. Submit your ideas from now until April 16th for the chance to be an important part of CAST 2010. To apply, head over to the application website and create a username and password. You can then login to access the online application. Please make sure to fill out your application as accurately as possible, so that we have the best information with which to make our decision and to schedule your course, if you are chosen to present. Thank you for your interest in being a part of CAST 2010! We look forward to hearing all of your great ideas.


STAT Needs Your Votes!

Decide Who Will Represent Texas Science Teachers

The Nominees

President-Elect Ross Ann Hill

Vice President Nedaro Bellamy

Tony Zahn

Secretary Laurel Digrando

Deidre Parish

Treasurer Laurel Frank


President-Elect Ross Ann Hill

in pedagogy and technology, combined with an understanding of student development and how students learn. STAT provides leadership to support these needs for quality education by providing the network that is critical for our voice in science education. I believe that STAT should provide opportunities for teachers to learn about the national standards being developed in science and urge Texas policy makers to join the 47 other states involved in developing these standards. Likewise, STAT should support the participation of Texas in competing for the $4.3 billion in grants that will be awarded to those states.

During the last two years, I was privileged to be elected and serve as STAT Secretary and also STAT Vice President, a rewarding and motivating experience because of my beliefs that teachers can make a difference and teachers need to provide a leadership voice in quality education. I value the opportunity to represent educators in science education, and I take my elected position seriously! As science educators, we embrace new opportunities and challenges with science education in Texas with modifications of the TEKS and their implementation. Curriculum and instruction at the secondary level should be informed by the College Readiness Standards as well. As stakeholders in quality science education, we understand the importance of strong partnerships to accomplish our goals. We also encourage foundations for educators that we feel are critical to assure the learning our students are required to demonstrate as they prepare for college and careers in the twenty-first century. Teachers require a deep understanding of content, expertise

In my role as a middle school science teacher in Idalou, Texas for the last 26 years, I have embraced opportunities to grow as an educator to assure students could benefit through my professional development. I wanted a difference for students. Through my experiences, provided by STAT, my school and valued partnerships in education, my vision grew. I wanted opportunities for students, but I also wanted opportunities and the required support for teachers to provide these opportunities. I was honored to be selected as the STAT Outstanding Middle School Teacher of the Year in 2004 because of innovation and leadership encouraged through the support of my district and my community. STAT is an innovative and essential organization that has the opportunity to better prepare its members as we prepare teachers and students for exciting new challenges. As an organization we have the charge of providing vision, leadership, and opportunity. I am honored to provide leadership in the science community as well as represent those who elected me, and I want to be your voice for science education as the President for STAT.


Vice President Nedaro Bellamy

No Biography Information Provided


Vice President Tony Zahn

In the 21st Century it is more important than ever that we teach our students to truly understand science. With an all-time low in STEM graduates that rivals the pre-Sputnik era, it’s essential that science programs lead students to deep conceptual understandings. Curriculum models that compel students to do science and know science will fall short until they purposefully lead students to understand science. Understanding science on a conceptual level can be achieved so that the students of today will be able to use science to solve the problems of tomorrow.



Laurel Digrando

No Biography Information Provided



Deidre Parish As the STAT Secretary, I want to be an active participant in an association that promotes safe lab conditions, science curriculum options for high school students, and equity for all students in Texas. By providing support and information for teachers, together we can achieve scientific literacy for our students. Hands-on, engaging science promotes and empowers education. Science teachers hold the key.

Exposure. Options. I believe that our students have the opportunity to find and to experience science that interests them. We have standards written by teachers that encompass all realms of science and the possible combinations of student classes can be customized for individual career aspirations. What a great time to be a student in Texas and what a great time to be a teacher! Exposure must begin early so we must continue to support the elementary teachers with easy hands-on activities that engage the students. Exploration in middle school science facilitates more in depth learning by making the connections through the grade levels that support scientific thinking. As teachers, we have the responsibility of guiding our students and helping them become all that they can be.


Treasurer Laurel Frank

Just as someone marked the course and cleared the roads to make way for the runners, STAT keeps an eye on upcoming science events including the TEKS adoption and implementation process, new state testing requirements, graduation plan information, textbook adoption procedures, and State Board of Education policies to be able to serve as a clearinghouse of information to science teachers and administrators across the state. Just as someone set up water stations along the course to keep the runners performing at their best, STAT organizes CAST, one of the largest science conferences in the nation to help Think about marathon runners who teachers perform at their best. CAST is a truare well-equipped for the race. They train for ly remarkable opportunity for science teachers months or even years to be ready to conquer the from all corners of Texas to share and network course. And while the runners are the reason for with one another and get information from an the event, there are an amazing number of peo- amazing number of publishers and vendors. ple who contribute in obvious and subtle ways And as with any great event, there are to make the marathon a success. those who take care of the administrative de Science teachers are much like those mar- tails so the athletes are able to run the race. I’ve athon runners, completing the rewarding but served as STAT treasurer for the past two years sometimes daunting task of preparing the stu- alongside other dedicated volunteers who give dents across the state of Texas to become scien- their time to impact Texas science education. tifically literate citizens and perhaps even lovers I would be honored to serve as treasurer for a of science. STAT is an unwavering partner for third term. So let me take care of some of those those who are daily charting the course of sci- little details so you can get out there and run the race for our students! ence education.


National Lab Day

By Francis Eberle

On November 23rd, 2009 President Obama

in their classroom. Whether its additional lab announced National Lab Day as part of the Ad- equipment, personal mentoring from a scientist, a ministration’s Educate to Innovate campaign. Na- visit to a working lab, technology support, interntional Lab Day (NLD) is an effort to bring more ships, help with a lesson plan, up-to-date career authentic, hands-on, discovery-based lab experi- information, help with a science fair project, or just an extra set of hands for a class project, teachences to students. ers know best what is needed to improve their stu This year’s National Lab Day will culmi- dents’ hands-on learning experiences. nate in a series of events and activities at the loNLD is teacher driven. After posting their cal, regional and national level during the first week of May 2010. But it is more than just a day. projects and requests, teachers will be matched It is a nationwide movement to support science, with a list of local volunteers. These volunteers-technology, engineering, and math (STEM) edu- university STEM students, local scientists, engication in our schools. It is teachers working with neers, STEM professionals and other members community volunteers and communities rallying of the community who have also joined the NLD around teachers and scientists and other STEM hub--will form a local community of support, professionals donating their time and expertise to helping the teacher to achieve desired objectives. our schools. National Lab Day seeks to foster part- The NLD website will also connect teachers to the nerships between teachers, schools, STEM profes- resources, funding opportunities, and informasionals, volunteers, federal agencies, and profes- tion on relevant programs and events that they sional organizations that will continue long after need. Teachers can also use the site to connect with volunteers, raise funds, and schedule face-to-face the first National Lab Day. meetings and events. NLD Partners National Lab Day is a partnership between federal agencies, foundations, professional societies, and other STEM-related organizations. The National Science Teachers Association is a founding partner of NLD. The National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the Department of Energy are among the federal agencies providing support and expertise. The Jack D. Hidary, Bill and Melinda Gates and the MacArthur Foundations are joining with industry to finance the effort.

The Role of Volunteers Volunteers will be able to browse teacher requests and will be automatically notified of any “matches” to teacher requests. Volunteers can respond to specific teacher requests or they can offer general expertise, resources, and/or assistance. Learn more about National Lab Day at www., and join the scores of teachers who have already signed up to bring more hands on learning to their students.

Getting Started It’s a simple process to join National Lab Day. Teachers register on the National Lab Day website and describe the project they want or need


Open Letter to the SBOE and Commissioner Scott Dear Texas State Board of Education and Commissioner Scott: Thank you for your service to Texas students. The Science Teachers Association of Texas represents more than 6,000 Pre-K-12 science teachers and supervisors. We have repeatedly urged the SBOE to keep IPC as an option for the Recommended High School Program (RHSP). Science teachers across the state continue to request that IPC remain an option on the RHSP. Universities continue to accept IPC as meeting their entrance requirements. Senator Shapiro’s office explained that the EOC exams legislation was a result of the SBOE’s decision to phase out IPC as a RHSP option. Therefore, with the science and science education communities’ urging, we once again request that a way be found to put IPC back into the RHSP. IPC is a viable course to prepare students for success in the significantly more rigorous new TEKS in Chemistry and Physics. There is a greater emphasis on calculation-based Student Expectations in Chemistry and Physics in the new TEKS. IPC is a good transition course to Chemistry and Physics. One problem that hinders student success in science is the lack of math skills or that the math that is needed in the science course is not taught until later in the year in the math course. For example, the 6th grade science teacher can’t teach the physics concepts that require understanding ratios until the second semester after ratios are taught in math. The new Chemistry TEKS require significantly more math background and many are predicting a high failure rate in the Chemistry EOC. Even with the former Chemistry TEKS, the Algebra needed in Chemistry was taught by the chemistry teacher before it was taught in the Algebra class.


Low teacher certification standards continue to play a role in quality of instruction. Quality Counts (Education Week, Jan 14, 2010) gives Texas a grade of “C” for “The Teaching Profession” in accountability for quality in traditional teacher preparation programs, partly because we do not require substantial coursework in the content. Furthermore, many Alternative Certification (AC) programs have much less rigorous standards than the tradition programs that received the “C” and more than 50% of the new teachers in Texas are from AC programs. Moreover, allowing a low rigor course like Food Science as a fourth year science option on the RSHP and the Distinguished Graduation Program is not consistent with the explanation for the removal of IPC from the college preparation requirements. We are confident that with all of our efforts towards planning Excellence in Science Education in a collaborative, systematic and creative manner, our students can move forward successfully towards college and workforce readiness.

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The Mobile Offshore Learning Unit (MOLU) The Mobile Offshore Learning Unit (MOLU) is a $1.2 million dollar engaging traveling exhibit. It features six self contained learning centers with curriculum-based, hands-on activities about energy and the technologies and sciences involved with the oil and gas industry. The curriculum for each of the 24 activities is based on national and Texas state standards (TEKS). Although the MOLU is geared for 5th grade students, it is also appropriate for other age groups. The MOLU is sponsored by Teachers will need to accomplish the following prior to the visit: ■ Administer pre-test ■ Have students view 2 complimentary DVDs, OEC’s The Offshore Story and API's Fuel-less ■ Have students complete a Career Interest Profile form


Following the visit, teachers are asked to: ■ Review and correct answers in the MOLU Pass booklet with students ■ Administer post-test ■ Score pre/post tests and mail to OEC ■ Complete online teacher evaluation form A pre-visit package containing all necessary materials will be sent to the school prior to the MOLU visit.

Devon, Dominion, ExxonMobil, Halliburton, Marathon Oil Company, and Schlumberger. For more information about the MOLU and to download a MOLU Request Form, please visit

Project E³: Expanding Energy Education Workshops At Ocean

Star Museum in Galveston – 20th Street at Harborside Drive 2 0 1 0 W O R K S H O P D AT E S

Knowledge Box Grades 6-12

Playing with Petroleum Grades K-5

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Friday, November 20, 2010

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Participants will receive a light breakfast, lunch, the Project E³: Expanding Energy Education Book (a $35.00 value), and a $25.00 travel stipend. A $35.00 check along with the registration will hold your place. This will be returned to you upon completion of the 7 hour workshop which begins at 9:00am. Each participant will also receive 6 CPE hours and will be entitled to reserve a Knowledge Box or Playing with Petroleum Kit for up to 30 days to untilize in their classrooms at no charge. (Free pick-up and delivery within the Houston area.) Ask about workshops outside of the Houston/Galveston area.

Mail checks to: Offshore Energy Center 200 N. Dairy Ashford, Suite 6220 Houston, Texas 77079 (281) 544-2435 Fax: (281) 544-2441

For more information about the workshops, visit our website: www or contact Doris Tomas, Education Director,


Continuing Education Evolution in the Fossil Record and Variation, Selection and Inheritance Professional Development Series for Teachers

The Texas Natural Science Center is pleased to announce two, five day professional development programs in which teachers work with University of Texas scientists and science educators to investigate evolutionary concepts utilizing techniques from DNA analysis to interpreting the fossil record. These workshops target educators who teach evolution as part of their science curriculum and plan to teach during the 2009-2010 school year. Workshop Dates: Evolution in the Fossil Record – June 14-18, 2010 Variation, Selection, and Inheritance – June 21-25, 2010 In these sessions, educators will work with University of Texas at Austin scientists to: integrate inquiry practices into the classroom, investigate lines of evidence for biological evolution, extract and sequence DNA, investigate genotypic and phenotypic variation, observe and document changes over long periods of Earth’s history, compare and contrast the morphology of humans and their closest living relatives, investigate antibiotic resistance and rapid evolution, and much more! Participants will receive: a $250 stipend multiple curriculum guides which include activities covered in the workshop field trips to multiple collections facilities and laboratories 36 hours of professional development (CPE) credit housing is available to a limited number of out of town participants Spots are limited and educators must apply to participate in the program. For more information, please contact Christina Cid at 512.232.5509 or For more information about the Texas Natural Science Center, visit



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