OSTA FLIPS for Science

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The Oklahoma Science Teachers Association Fall Conference

Coming October 31-November 1, 2014

OSTA “Flips” for Science

Registration for the OSTA Fall Conference ENDS TODAY!

 The University of Central Oklahoma is once again the host for the OSTA Fall Staff Development Conference

“OSTA Flips for Science”

 UCO’s Howell Hall Science building on the campus of the University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

8 am until 4:00 pm

$30 per person full Member registration, includes refreshments before and during the conference as well as lunch (Register by Oct 24th to assure lunch).

On-line payment is preferred.

This is a Members-Only Conference.

Join OSTA HERE

Register for the Conference by logging in to your OSTA Memberclicks account (Login required).

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NCSE Update – 10/31/14

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UPDATE FROM WYOMING

The Wyoming Tribune Eagle (October 26, 2014) reviewed the status of the state’s science standards. As NCSE previously reported, a footnote in Wyoming’s budget for 2014-2016 precluded the use of state funds “for any review or adoption” of the Next Generation Science Standards, in part owing to their treatment of climate change. The Wyoming state board of education subsequently declined to develop a new set of science standards independent of the NGSS.

Mary Throne (D-District 11), who wrote the final version of the footnote, told the Tribune Eagle that it was misinterpreted: “My goal was to allow the state board to use the Next Generation Science Standards as a template and then basically ‘Wyomingize’ them—tweak them to fit Wyoming better, but not to throw them out all together.” Throne said that she hoped to seek a repeal of the footnote in the next session of the legislature.

Marguerite Herman of Wyoming for Science Education defended the NGSS, saying, “They are high-class, 21st century, peer-reviewed [standards] and are based on what students need to know, what industry needs students to know and an understanding of how people learn science.” She expressed hope that in the future Wyoming education would be free of political interference. “The Legislature set the review process back, and our kids are the losers in the process.”

Despite the legislature’s decision, local school districts are apparently free to adopt the NGSS, and about fifteen (of forty-eight) have done so. Still, the decision was disruptive: Jack Cozort of Laramie County School District 2 commented, “We saw the footnote, and we slammed on the brakes.” Melanie Fierro of Laramie County School District 1 added, “It does put us in a little bit of a bind,” but approvingly described the change to the NGSS as a “paradigm shift.” Herman worried about the effect of the lack of a set of state standards that cover climate change on teachers: “If you’re in a district without [the NGSS], your hands may be tied, and you won’t have the resources.” NCSE’s Minda Berbeco added, “Standards help set the guidelines for professional development and what teachers should know going into the classroom … If you leave out a topic, they’re less likely to learn about it.”

For the story in the Wyoming Tribune Eagle, visit:

http://www.wyomingnews.com/articles/2014/10/26/news/01top_10-26-14.txt And for NCSE’s previous coverage of events in Wyoming, visit:

http://ncse.com/news/wyoming

POLL DATA ON EVOLUTION AND CLIMATE CHANGE

The Chapman University Survey on American Fears included a pair of questions relevant to evolution and climate change.

Asked “Which of the following statements comes closest to your views about the origin and development of man?” 39.9% of respondents preferred “God created man pretty much in his present form at one time within the last 10,000 years,” 19.0% preferred “Man has developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life. God had no part in this process,” and 36.5% preferred “Man has developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process, including man’s”; 4.6% of respondents refused to answer. Asked “Which of the following statements best describes your personal belief about global climate change (global warming due to the Greenhouse effect)?” 59.1% of respondents preferred “Global climate change is occur[r]ing and is significantly accelerated by human activities and pollution,” 16.2% preferred “Global climate change is occur[r]ing, but is not the result of human activities and pollution,” and 8.8% preferred “Global climate change is NOT occur[r]ing”; 12.6% of respondents indicated that none of the statements accurately described their beliefs and 3.2% refused to answer.

The survey was conducted on-line in April 2014 by the GfK Group using a representative sample of adults in the United States; there were 1573 respondents in all.

For information about the survey, visit:

http://www.chapman.edu/wilkinson/research-centers/babbie-center/survey-american-fears.aspx And for NCSE’s collection of polls and surveys on climate, visit:

http://ncse.com/polls/polls-climate-change

WHAT’S NEW FROM THE SCIENCE LEAGUE OF AMERICA Have you been visiting NCSE’s blog, The Science League of America, recently? If not, then you’ve missed:

* Glenn Branch discussing a misquotation of Ernst Haeckel: http://ncse.com/blog/2014/10/riled-haeckel-0015946

* Josh Rosenau considering the use of humor as a tool against pseudoscience: http://ncse.com/blog/2014/10/wielding-humor-as-tool-0015945

* Mark McCaffrey debunking a misconception about the ozone hole: http://ncse.com/blog/2014/10/misconception-monday-oh-no-ozone-hole-0015949 And much more besides!

For The Science League of America, visit:

http://ncse.com/blog

Thanks for reading. And don’t forget to visit NCSE’s website—http://ncse.com – where you can always find the latest news on evolution and climate education and threats to them.

Sincerely,

Glenn Branch
Deputy Director
National Center for Science Education, Inc.
420 40th Street, Suite 2
Oakland, CA 94609-2509
510-601-7203 x303
fax: 510-601-7204
800-290-6006
branch@ncse.com
http://ncse.com
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OMRF Fleming Scholar Program

The Fleming Scholar Program was founded in 1956 as a way to give Oklahoma’s high school and college students “hands-on” biomedical research experience. The program is named for Sir Alexander Fleming, the famed British scientist, who discovered penicillin and in 1949 came to Oklahoma City to formally dedicate the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation’s first building. In the first news release about the program in 1956, the late Dean A. McGee, then Chairman of the Board of Directors’ Executive Committee, expressed the philosophy behind the program:

“We feel that students will greatly benefit from the opportunity of working shoulder-to-shoulder in the laboratories with our scientific personnel. Our scientists feel also that in this way they can make a direct contribution to the solution of the critical manpower shortage in the field of biology and medical research. We are shorthanded in terms of having adequate staff to do the job of expanding our knowledge in the field of human health, and perhaps by this program, we will be helping identify and stimulate the scientists of tomorrow.”

In 1982, the Fleming Scholar Program became a model for a national program funded by the federal government to bring the best and brightest high school and college students into contact with the best and brightest scientific and mathematical minds in government and non-government laboratories.

Today the Fleming Scholar Program remains popular, attracting as many as 100 applicants each year.

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To apply for the Fleming Scholar Program, you MUST be:

  • An Oklahoma resident at the time of high school graduation.
  • At least 16 years of age.
  • Classified as a high school senior or college freshman, sophomore or junior at the time of application submission.
  • A United States citizen or permanent resident or have unrestricted employment authorization in accordance with applicable Immigration and Naturalization Service regulations (example: J-2 with Employment Authorization Document). Applicants with an H-4 visa are not eligible.
  • Willing and able to commit to the program’s entire eight-week time frame, which begins the first Monday following Memorial Day.

Scholars are selected based on aptitude and interest in science and math, academic standing, essays and recommendation letters written as part of the application process.

Find out more at omrf.org

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Know Where to Go and How to Get There

So… how will you know when you’ve arrived at the OSTA Fall Conference?  You’ll be in the Visitor parking lot just East of the Nigh University Center at UCO and on your way to Howell Hall!

Saturday is Homecoming at the University of Central Oklahoma, but nearly all of the festivities for that event are on the North end of the campus.  All parking on campus is free this Saturday.

Click this link to get a complete map of the UCO campus.
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Take the Shirt Off Our Back!

Pre-Order your OFFICIAL OSTA FLIPS for Science Fall Conference t-shirt from the Oklahoma Shirt Company.

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Shirts are $15 each and will be available for pick-up at the conference.  Shirts are only available by pre-order from the Oklahoma Shirt Company website .

Show your OSTA pride by purchasing your OSTA Flips for Science T-Shirt today!

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OSTA Conference to Feature Silent Auction to Benefit Science Fair

Each year OSTA presents cash awards to deserving student researchers at the annual Oklahoma State Science Fair in Ada.  Those awards are funded entirely through proceeds raise in the annual silent auction at the OSTA Fall Conference. OSTA members donate items of value (this isn’t a garage sale), and conference participants can place their bids on the items throughout the day of the conference.  There are a lot of varied items up for bid, like a new Misfit Shine, donated by company founder and CEO Sonny Vu.

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The Shine is a small, waterproof activity tracker that displays it’s data through an iPhone or Android Phone app.  You may recall the recent Apple iPhone ad that featured the Shine and other activity trackers in action to the Tune of  “Chicken Fat”, the exercise-inspiring song by actor Robert Preston that was distributed to schools across the country through President Kennedy’s efforts to increase physical fitness of the nation’s youth.  (That may be a obtuse historical aside for most of you, but I well recall my efforts to keep up with the demands of this song while a 6th grader in 1962, especially the day when our teacher accidently(?) set the 33 1/3 RPM record to play at 45 RPM).

But what makes this donation special is that Sonny is an Oklahoman bi.mobilehealthx616AND an alumnus of the Oklahoma State Science Fair!  A graduate of Putnam City West High School, Sonny graduated from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign with a degree in mathematics and pursued a PhD in linguistics at MIT studying under Noam Chomsky.  After working for a time at Microsoft, he founded the software company FireSpout, which was eventually purchased by a large search engine company.   He then, with his old college roommate, Sridhar Iyengar, started AgaMatrix, a company that invents, manufactures, and markets a number of blood glucose monitoring and diabetes management products.  That company has developed and sold millions of glucose monitoring devices and features digital signal processing technology that drastically dampens common signal distortions in signals to the meter and uploads data to a mobile device.  After securing a partnership between AgaMatrix and Sanofi-aventis, one of Europe’s largest pharmaceutical companies, he left to found Misfit Wearables in an effort to capture a portion of the multi-billion dollar wearables device market.

Sonny is one of the thousands of Oklahoma youngsters who have been a part of science education and the many “value added” science programs (like Science Fair, Science Olympiad, BotBall, Science Quest, Engineering Fair, etc.) that we have in Oklahoma.  Your participation in the OSTA Silent Auction is yet another way you pay it forward to the future of these remarkable students.  Bring your checkbook and/or your credit card (we have a card reader).  Yes, you’ll be able to find a bargain, but this isn’t about you or OSTA.  It’s about the Sonny Vu’s that we teach and mentor and the next generation of Oklahoma scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs who work too make the world a better place.

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What’s On the OSTA Conference Program?

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Although the final conference program is not yet ready, we can share most of the program offerings for the OSTA Fall Conference November 1st.

There is something for everyone.  We have workshops designed for primary school to high school.  There are several commercial workshops as well as many workshops from OSTA members who are sharing their expertise with their fellow Oklahoma Science Teachers.

State Mathematic Director  Levi Patrick and State Science Director Tiffany Neil are co-presenting some sessions on engaging students in the science and engineering practices of “Analyzing and Interpreting Data” and “Mathematical and Computational Thinking”.

IMPORTANT! – Conference Online Pre-registration is open through October 31st HOWEVER,  The lunch order must be completed by this week-end.  To guarantee lunch, please register this week!

Sign up for the OSTA Fall Conference by signing in through your Memberclicks account. Remember to sign up to attend the OSTA Awards Reception Friday night!

Session Title Presenter Primary Audience
Teachers as Technology Trailblazers: Designing PD this year? 3 Things You Can’t Afford to Forget Bohn General
Project Based Learning a route to Higher Order Thinking Whitaker General
Don’t be Taken unaware, get involved with science fair Thompson General
Riding the Longer Wavelength End of the EM Spectrum Grzybowski General, High School
OU Soonertarium and WWT Software to Teach Astronomy Concepts Grzybowski General, Intermediate, Middle School, High School
Focus and Explore Wave Energy and STEM Education K-8 Coyle General, Primary, Intermediate, Middle School
National Geographic Explorer Bigbee General, Primary, Intermediate, Middle School, High School
STEM Physics with Robots Hsu High School
Teaching Subscripts and Coefficients to ALL Students Smith High School
One in a Million – Concentration Made Easy! Smith High School
Teaching Photosynthesis and Respiration: A Hands-on Approach Smith High School
Lessons Ideas for Increased Student Understanding Alexander High School
Hands-on Human Ecology for the Next Generation Neely High School
Growing Rock Crystals Hodge Intermediate
Circuits Carter Intermediate
The Force Carter Intermediate
From 3-D Foam Maps to Mashed Potato Landscapes: Bringing Remote Sensing To Life in the Classroom Risenhoover Intermediate, Middle School
Model Mania Miller-DeBoer Intermediate, Middle School, High School
Chemical Reaction: How Do We Know? Will Intermediate, Middle School, High School
Teaching Waves to Middle School Students: A Hands-on Approach Smith Middle School
Oklahoma Regional Science Bowl Bliss Middle School, High School
Flip for TI-Nspire Technology Norfar Middle School, High School
Engaging Students in Chemistry and Physics Adams Middle School, High School
Time to Join the Science Olympiad Melton Middle School, High School
STEM-Early Childhood Style! Coyle Primary
Elementary STEAM Akins Primary
Rolling Carts Carter Primary
Roller Coaster Design Carter Primary
Citizen Science: It’s Easy Meteorology McLanahan Primary, Intermediate
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Dr. Donna Nelson to Keynote OSTA Conference

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OSTA is please to announce Dr. Donna J. Nelson as the featured speaker to keynote the 2014 OSTA Fall Conference November 1st at UCO in Edmond.

Dr. Donna Nelson, is a professor of chemistry at the University of Oklahoma. Nelson was born in Eufaula, Oklahoma, a small town known for its Native American influences. Her father was the only physician in the town. She earned her bachelor of science degree in chemistry at the University of Oklahoma, obtained her PhD in chemistry at the University of Texas at Austin with Michael J. S. Dewar, and did her postdoctorate at Purdue University with Herbert C. Brown before joining the University of Oklahoma. She was a Faculty Fellow in the OU Provost’s Office 1989-1990, a Visiting Professor at MIT 2003, and assistant to American Chemical Society President Dr. Ann Nalley, 2005-2007.

Dr. Nelson’s current research pertains to nanoscience, communicating science to the public, and scientific workforce development and she frequently speaks on the interrelationship of these topics. She has over 100 publications. She has received many honors, including American Chemical Society (ACS) Fellow, ACS Israel Award, ACS Nalley Award, Oklahoma Chemist Award, Fulbright Scholar, National Science Foundation (NSF) ADVANCE Leadership Award, Women’s eNews “21 Leaders for the 21st Century,” AAAS Fellow, Guggenheim Award, National Organization for Women “Woman of Courage” Award, Ford Foundation Fellowship, Oklahoma Outstanding Professor Award, Minority Health Professions Foundation Hall of Fame Inductee, Sigma Xi Faculty Research Award, NSF Special Creativity Extension, and many keynote talks. She has spoken at hundreds of national meetings of professional societies and organizations, US Congress Capitol Hill briefings, teleconferences, universities, and radio and TV programs, such as the McNeil-Lehrer News Hour.

Her chemical research involves functionalizing single walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs), which has applications in energy research and technology development. Recently her group showed that both covalent functionalization and complexation of organic molecules to SWCNTs causes nearby protons to be shifted downfield in the NMR.

She advises television programs, such as Breaking Bad, in order to further the universal goal of presenting accurate science to TV audiences. In accord with this program, in 2011, she organized the highly-popular Hollywood Chemistry symposium at the Anaheim ACS Meeting and Science on the Screen symposia at the Denver ACS Meeting, for ACS President Nancy Jackson. According to her Wikipedia entry she participated in the “Geek of the Week” program of David Saltzberg, by visiting the set of The Big Bang Theory in March 2013 and again in March 2014. In the 2011 Ig Nobel Awards, she gave a 24/7 presentation on her SWCNT research, in which she gave a technical talk appropriate for scientists to describe the work in 24 seconds, followed by 7 words which would clarify the work to all laypeople. The seven words were “SWCNT analyses should be shaken, not stored.”

Her scientific workforce development research entailed surveys of faculty race/ethnicity, gender, and rank in “Top 50″ departments in each of 15 science and engineering disciplines. Comparing her faculty data vs NSF PhD and BS attainment revealed that women and minorities are much less represented among professors than among degree recipients. Her faculty data are complete populations, rather than samples, so they accurately reveal the small number or absence of underrepresented groups and compare across disciplines.

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2014 OSTA Awards Reception

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This is your invitation to join with the rest of the Oklahoma Science Teachers Association  in a reception honoring this year’s recipients of the OSTA Awards.   Join as we celebrate the accomplishments and achievements of outstanding science educators from across the state. The reception will be held on downtown OKC on Film Row at the Dunlap-Codding Law Firm.  Doors open at 6:30 pm and the awards program will begin at 7:00. The address is 609 W. Sheridan.  DC on Film Row is an exciting place within a burgeoning new community on the west side of downtown.  See more about it on their website video.

When you register for the conference, be sure to check your attendance at the OSTA Awards Reception on Friday, October 31st.  There is no additional charge for the reception.  Already registered? You can modify your registration through your user profile in OSTA Memberclicks.

This year’s honorees are:

The Jack Renner Award for Service to Science Education in Oklahoma – Dr. Bruce Weems, East Central University.

Dr. Weems has worked at ECU since 1972. He was a physics professor, physics department chair, and since 1991 Dean of the College of Health and Sciences. He has helped many a department chair, faculty member, and student with every aspect of science education during his tenure.  He always says “every physics teacher we put in the schools only help us out by sending us good students in physics”.

But it is also for his work with the Oklahoma State Science & Engineering Fair (a.k.a. OSSEF) that OSTA recognizes Dr. Weems with the  Jack Renner Award. Bruce took over as director for the OSSEF in 1982. He helped run the fair with Dr. Don Kellogg before 1982. Weems fought for funding, selected the best regional sites, found volunteers, judges, and worked the paperwork end as science fair director until 2006. He called every student and gave them a chance to turn in the missing paperwork so that they could compete. Bruce Weems took on the additional job of science fair director because he saw the benefit of students doing research as a way of learning before many recognized the benefit.  Many of these science fair students have made significant impacts in science and engineering.  Each year some 300 students attend the Oklahoma state fair each year and through the work of Dr. Weems approximately  7500 students have experienced the state science fair.  He will retire from East Central University in Dec. 2014 after 42 years of service to ECU science.

High School Science Teacher – Amy Clardy, Haworth High School

Over the last five years, Amy has been a member of the National Science Teacher Association as well as a member of the Oklahoma Science Teacher Association. Amy has attended numerous professional development opportunities including with the K20 center, AP Central Institutes, Steve Spangler Workshops and the OSTA Fall Science Conference. She was a Master Teacher with the Oklahoma State Department of Education for two years, and was given the opportunity to present at the SDE regional summer conference each year.  A prolific grant writer, over the last five years, Amy has written and awarded funding from the Fund for Teachers to attend a professional development workshop in San Antonio, the Dream Team grant with the K20 center, and a KIPR (BOTBALL) grant to enable her students to build and write code for their very first school robot.   Amy holds with a Masters in Educational Leadership.

Middle School Teacher – Dr. Geary Crofford, Woodall School, Tahlequah

Dr. Crofford is currently completing an M.E. in Teaching and pursuing National Board Certification, was designated a Cherokee Scholar in 2014 by the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence and a DaVinci/Martin Scholar in 2010. He has evaluated several grant programs, and received two First Robotics grants from OSDE. He attended the NSTA STEM Forum in New Orleans this past summer as a Cherokee Scholar, and is currently part of the Higher Ground-STEM Math/Science Program hosted by Altus Public Schools and Western Oklahoma State College.  Dr. Crofford is not only a dedicated teacher in the classroom with his students of all ability and grade levels but he also carries out research with relevance to his teaching. He believes in hands-on experiences for all of his students and helping them to develop important concepts and apply them. He encourages his students to see themselves in STEM majors and careers and has dedicated himself especially to members of his tribe, the Cherokee Nation.

Elementary School Teacher – Megan Veldhuizen. Woodland Hills Elementary, Lawton

Megan teacher a transitional 1st grade classroom at Woodland Hills who’s philosophy is that all children can do science and that science is just as important as the other subjects.   She teaches young children lab safety and then lets them do actual labs, writing grants to fund projects in her classroom. She has taken on leadership positions in her school and is part of OkSci Leadership.

The OSTA Awards Reception is generously underwritten by our partners from the Oklahoma Energy Resources Board and Pearson.

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New Flight Opportunity for School Districts: Announcing Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP) Mission 8 to the International Space Station, Starting February 2015

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  • Download a PDF of this Press Release
  • Watch Video: A Program Overview
  • After reading this Press Release, be sure to read the SSEP Homepage that serves as an Executive Summary for the program
  • Subscribe to receive email notification of breaking news on SSEP using the Subscribe Box at the bottom of the right column.

 

Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP) Mission 8 to the International Space Station

Time Critical: interested schools are directed to inquire about the program no later than November 15, 2014

The National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE), and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education, in partnership with NanoRacks LLC, announce a new opportunity for school districts across the U.S. and internationally to participate in the tenth flight opportunity of the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP).

Launched in June 2010, SSEP was designed as a model U.S. National STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education program that immerses typically 300 students across a community in every facet of authentic scientific research of their own design, using a highly captivating spaceflight opportunity on the International Space Station (ISS).

The program is designed to inspire and engage the next generation of scientists and engineers, and is accomplished by providing each participating community their own very real Space Program.

SSEP Mission 8 to ISS will provide each participating community a real research mini-laboratory capable of supporting a single microgravity experiment, and all launch services to fly the mini-lab to ISS in Fall 2015, and return it safely to Earth for harvesting and analysis. Mirroring how professional research is done, student teams across the community submit research proposals, and go through a formal proposal review process to select the flight experiment. The design competition – from program start, to experiment design, to submission of proposals by student teams – spans 9 weeks from February 23 to April 24, 2015. A curriculum, and content resources for teachers and students, supports foundational instruction on science conducted in microgravity (in a weightless environment) and experiment design. Additional SSEP program elements leverage the experience to engage the entire community, embracing a Learning Community Model for STEM education.

SSEP provides seamless integration across STEM disciplines through an authentic, high visibility research experience—an approach that embraces the Next Generation Science Standards. For school districts—even individual schools—SSEP provides an opportunity to implement a systemic, high caliber STEM education program tailored to community need. More broadly, SSEP is about a commitment to student ownership in exploration, to science as journey, and to the joys of learning.

SSEP is open to U.S. schools and school districts serving grade 5 through 12 students, 2- and 4-year colleges and universities, informal science education organizations, and internationally through the Center’s Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education. SSEP is not designed for an individual class or a small number of students in a community.

Student teams are able to design experiments across diverse fields, including: seed germination, crystal growth, physiology and life cycles of microorganisms, cell biology and growth, food studies, and studies of micro-aquatic life. Experiments require design to the technology and engineering constraints imposed by the mini-laboratory, and flight operations to and from low Earth orbit.

“SSEP is designed to empower the student as scientist, and within the real-world context of science. Student teams design a real experiment, propose for a real flight opportunity, experience a formal proposal review, and go through a NASA flight safety review. They even have their own science conference at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, where they are immersed in their own community of researchers”, said Dr. Jeff Goldstein, creator of SSEP and NCESSE Center Director. “SSEP is about introducing real science to our children and if you give them a chance to be scientists, stand back and be amazed.”

SSEP Mission 8 to ISS includes an experiment design competition February 23 through April 24, 2015. Flight experiments are selected by May 28, 2015, for a ferry flight to ISS in Fall 2015. All communities interested in participating in Mission 7 to ISS are directed to inquire no later than November 15, 2014.

Heritage: There have been nine SSEP flight opportunities to date—SSEP on STS-134 and STS-135, the final flights of Space Shuttles Endeavour and Atlantis; and SSEP Missions 1 through 7 to ISS. 99 communities across the U.S. and Canada have participated in the program. 25 communities have participated in 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6 flight opportunities, reflecting the sustainable nature of the program. A total of 48,900 grade 5-15 students have been fully immersed in microgravity experiment design and proposal writing. Over the first eight flight opportunities 7,922 experiment proposals were submitted by student teams.

Currently the 15 experiments of the SSEP Mission 5 to ISS Charlie Brown payload are aboard ISS, and the 18 experiments of the Mission 6 Yankee Clipper payload are awaiting launch in October 2014 on the Orbital Science 3 (Orb-3) vehicle, launching out of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS), Wallops Island, VA.

SSEP is the first pre-college STEM education program that is both a U.S. national initiative and implemented as an on-orbit commercial space venture. SSEP is undertaken by the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE) in the U.S. and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education Internationally. It is enabled through a strategic partnership with NanoRacks LLC, working with NASA under a Space Act Agreement as part of the utilization of the International Space Station as a National Laboratory.

The Smithsonian National Air and Space MuseumCenter for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS), and Subaru of America, Inc., are national partners on the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program.

For information on the Mission 8 to ISS flight opportunity, and to get a detailed understanding of the program, read the SSEP Home Page: http://ssep.ncesse.org

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Bring Evolution To Your School/Community For Darwin Day 2015!

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Interested in bringing cutting-edge evolutionary science to your school and community?  Apply to be a stop on NESCent’s 2015 Darwin Day Roadshow.

NESCent (The National Evolutionary Synthesis Center) is an NSF-funded evolution research center.  To celebrate Charles Darwin’s contributions to science and society, we send our scientists on the road every year around “Darwin Day” (the annual, world-wide celebration of Darwin’s birthday on Feb. 12th) to talk to students, teachers and the general public about their research and career opportunities in science.  Our focus is on small, rural communities (i.e., places that wouldn’t likely have a Darwin Day celebration if they weren’t a stop on our Roadshow) and any schools with traditionally under-served students.  There is no cost to you, the teachers, and we’ll even leave you with a collection of evolution teaching resources!

For more information, and to apply to have your school considered, please visit  or contact Jory Weintraub (jory at nescent dot org).  Applications are being accepted now through Friday, November 21st.

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