APAST – President’s Message, June, 2014
The fact that the Sun’s rays are coming from high in the sky this time of year is a welcomed occurrence in the minds of most educators! Most of us are able to take some much-needed time to relax, reflect, and re-charge our batteries. One of the great things about being an educator is that we return in August or September to new groups of students with whom we have hopes of raising to higher levels than in previous years.
APAST needs your talents, energy, and support — more about that later in this message. First, an update of some APAST happenings:
- A new slate of APAST officers and many new District Directors were installed in April.
- APAST applied to the IRS for tax exempt status (501c6) in January, but we have not yet learned the IRS’s dispensation of it.
- APAST’s website (www.APAST.org) has been improved.
- Members can now pay their annual dues through our website. While this makes it much easier for members, as of the date that I am typing this email there is an unresolved problem with it. We are not getting contact information about the people who have paid their dues online. We are working to resolve this.
- Many APAST members have shared with me the fine work they are doing, including presenting professional development sessions, writing journal articles, and participating in state-wide committees related to the Next Generation Science Standards.
Now back to my plea: APAST needs your talents, energy, and support. So far this century our total membership has been on a slight decline, our treasury is slowly shrinking, and we are hosting/sponsoring only a few events each year.
One more time — APAST needs your talents, energy, and support. Some things you can consider doing include the following:
- Obtain the email address (or other contact information) of the most recent Awardee in your state. The NSF was unable to provide us with the emails of the most recent group (2012, announced in December, 2013). If you can get the contact information, please send it to John Hunt (Treasurer) and me.
- Plan and deliver a professional session for teachers.
- Work within your state to formulate plans for improving alignment with the Next Generation Science Standards and how to assess student achievement.
- Contact local, state, and national politicians to emphasize the need for high-quality science education at ALL age levels.
- Please suggest projects and/or initiatives that you would like to see APAST tackle in the months and years ahead
- An initiative that I am working to get off the ground is the development of a set of 30-second or 60-second Public Service Announcements for television stations to broadcast. The theme would be “Got Science?”, taking advantage of the “Got Milk?” campaign. The general flow would be a BRIEF introduction to a science concept, a BRIEF demonstration, a BRIEF closure, and end with “Got Science? … look forward to science in your schools”. I hope to start developing some videos in the fall. Please let me know if you are interested in working on this with me.
Fred Myers, APAST President
We hope you enjoyed the APAST events at NSTA Boston!
APAST Breakfast Meeting
Sponsored by McGraw-Hill Education
APAST Business Meeting & Social
Sponsored by Ward’s Science
Assuming the Presidency of APAST, Fred Myers
President-elect: Linda Lee Smith
Secretary: Nancy Foote
District 1 Director: Kathy Renfrew
District 3 Director: Alma Miller
District 5 Director: Charlene Dindo
District 7 Director: Jason Crean
We wish our newly elected officers all the best in their new positions!
Thank you to McGraw-Hill Education for sponsoring our breakfast meeting and Ward’s Science for sponsoring our business meeting and social at the 2013 NSTA National Conference in San Antonio. The Association of Presidential Awardees in Science Teaching is grateful for the continued support and commitment of our sponsors.
APAST President Kenneth Huff has released a letter that is intended to express the support of the Association of Presidential Awardees in Science Teaching (APAST) toward the development and implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards. We believe this is an important step to guide science teaching and learning in the 21st Century.
To view this letter, please click here.
Upcoming NSTA Web Seminars on Preparing for the Next Generation Science Standards—Crosscutting Concepts
NSTA is presenting a series of seven web seminars on the Crosscutting Concepts described in The Framework for K-12 Science Education, released in 2011 by the National Research Council (NRC). The Framework describes the major practices, crosscutting concepts, and disciplinary core ideas that all students should be familiar with by the end of high school and is being used to guide the development of the Next Generations Science Standards.
The crosscutting concepts included in the Framework (and the final version of the NGSS) represent current research about how students learn best. Teachers are encouraged to learn more about these crosscutting concepts now in advance of the final release of NGSS and begin incorporating them into instruction to provide students the skill sets they need to be successful in learning any content.
The web seminars will be a valuable professional development experience for any science educator, but will be especially practical for those at the middle and high school level. They will also be helpful for science coordinators, supervisors, state science supervisors and others.
The web seminars are offered free of charge and are designed so that participants can attend just one or all seven sessions. They will run from 6:30-8:00 pm Eastern Time every other Tuesday starting on Tuesday, February 19.
NSTA Web Seminars on Crosscutting Concepts Feb. 19: Patterns March 5: Cause and effect: Mechanism and explanation March 19: Scale, proportion, and quantity April 2: Systems and system models April 16: Energy and matter: Flows, cycles, and conservation April 30: Structure and function May 14: Stability and change
For more information and to register visit:
Thank you to McGraw-Hill Education for sponsoring our breakfast meeting and VWR Education for sponsoring our business meeting and social at the NSTA National Conference in Indianapolis. The Association of Presidential Awardees in Science Teaching is grateful for the continued support and commitment of our sponsors.