December 19th, 2009 Bob
(from NCSE’s Evolution education update: December 18, 2009) A recent Harris poll included questions on evolution and creationism, with unsurprising results. According to Harris’s report, those surveyed were given a list of topics—including God, miracles, heaven, Jesus as God or the son of God, angels, survival of the soul after death, the resurrection of Jesus, Hell, the virgin birth, the Devil, “Darwin’s theory of evolution,” ghosts, creationism, UFOs, astrology, witches, and reincarnation—and asked, “Please indicate for each one if you believe in it, or not.” For evolution, 45% of respondents indicated that they believed in it, 32% indicated that they don’t believe in it, and 22% indicated that they were not sure. For creationism, 40% of respondents indicated that they believed in it, 30% indicated that they don’t believe in it, and 30% indicated that they were not sure.
The results varied by religion: 51% of Catholics, 32% of Protestants, 80% of Jews, and 16% of born-again Christians believed in Darwin’s theory of evolution, while 37% of Catholics, 56% of Protestants, 20% of Jews, and 68% of born-again Christians believed in creationism. Overall, the results were basically unchanged from 2007, when 42% of respondents believed in evolution and 39% of respondents believed in creationism. The poll was conducted on-line on November 2 and 11, 2009, among 2303 adults in the United States; figures were weighted to reflect the composition of the adult population. “Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel,” the report explains, “no estimates of theorical sampling error can be calculated.”
Previous reports and analyses of polls on NCSE’s website and in Reports of the NCSE include a report on a 2002 poll of the views of Ohio scientists with regard to “intelligent design,” Otis Dudley Duncan and Claudia Geist’s “The Creationists: How Many, Who, and Where?”, Glenn Branch’s “The Latest Polls on Creationism and Evolution” (summarizing the polls of 2004), George Bishop’s “Polls Apart on Human Origins” (reprinted from Public Opinion Pros), a report on a 2008 poll on public opinion in Canada, and a report on the British Council’s 2009 poll of public opinion in ten countries. NCSE plans in 2010 to add a special section of its website to summarize and collect such reports and analyses, so stay tuned!
For Harris’s report (PDF), visit:
For the cited reports and analyses, visit:
December 17th, 2009 Bob
Ho, Ho, Ho.
Click here to find more news about science teaching events and opportunities from OSDE Science Director Jana Rowland.
December 16th, 2009 Bob
Walking beside thousand-year-old burial mounds, flaking raw stone into tools, learning how potsherds tell us about human behavior, and understanding how humans adapt to complex, ever-changing environments our 2010 Summer Institute features all this and more.
The Mississippi Valley Archaeology Center at the University of Wisconsin–La Crosse will offer a three-week NEH Summer Institute on July 12–30, 2010. This dynamic learning experience for K-12 teachers will explore how Native Americans and Euro-Americans have adapted to the Upper Mississippi River Valley over the past 13,500 years, and how archaeology leads to an understanding of how human cultures change and adapt through time.
The Institute will feature a one-day excavation experience, field trips to archaeological sites, hands-on laboratory and workshop activities, demonstrations, and classroom activities. Individual projects will help participants tailor the content to their own teaching areas. Participants receive a $2,700 stipend to help offset their expenses.
Application and other information on the Institute is available online at http://www.uwlax.edu/mvac/neh.htm. The deadline for applications is March 2, 2010.
December 16th, 2009 Bob
The PBS engineering show, Design Squad, has a free Teacher’s Guide for middle school educators! The guide blends hands-on engineering challenges with 3 core science concepts:
Force – students build their own blimps
Electricity – students design electronic games
Sound – students make and play instruments
The challenges use low cost, readily available materials and are linked to national science and technology standards.
Order your free copy of the Design Squad Teacher’s Guide here
December 12th, 2009 Bob
Society for Science & the Public (SSP), with generous support from Intel, is pleased to announce the 2nd year of its Fellows Program. The SSP Fellows Program provides funds and training to selected U.S. science and math teachers who serve under-resourced students, to enable interested and motivated students to perform high-quality independent scientific research.
The SSP Fellows Program has attracted the most creative and motivated high school science and math teachers in the country. Through a competitive selection process, the Program will provide teachers the financial and training resources necessary to support and inspire the success of their most enthusiastic science students. Fellows may serve for up to four years. The goal is to enable Fellows to guide students to produce project-based research of the highest quality, such as is selected for SSP’s premiere science competition, the Intel Science Talent Search.
Demonstrated interest in research but actual research experience not required. Active engagement in 9-12 grade science or if not actively teaching at this time, must demonstrate access to students to mentor.
Teaching credential. Must be from a school that has enrollment that is at least 40% underrepresented minority and/or with at least 30% of students qualified for free or reduced rate lunches.
Demonstrated evidence of engagement with students (e.g. participation in field trips, science clubs, science fair, mentorship activities; support of independent research). Excellent written and oral communication skills.
Must be able to attend Fellows Institute in Washington DC – July 26 through July 30, 2010. SSP pays for the whole trip!
Fellows receive a stipend of up to $8500/year depending on proposed budget, demonstrated need, support of the school and needs of the student population.
Deadline for application to the 2010 Fellows Program will be January 15, 2010 at 5:00pm EST.
For information about the Fellows Program please visit: http://outreach.societyforscience.org/
For questions please contact
Jennifer A. Carter
Director of Outreach
Society for Science & the Public
1719 N Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20036-2801
202.872.5140 (phone), 202.822.3922 (fax)
December 9th, 2009 Bob
Hot off the press! Get your December JanaGram from OSDE Science Director Jana Rowland December Science News 2009.
December 7th, 2009 Bob
The Oklahoma NASA Space Grant Consortium is sponsoring a summer institute for NASA’s Space Science Mission Directorate. We call this Mission to Planet Earth (MTPE). Use the excitement of Aerospace Education to motivate students with a research-based, hands-on curriculum across all subject areas. Enhance your teaching by aligning these motivational activities with the National Standards and the Oklahoma PASS.
Pre-service and in-service classroom teachers in any subject area whom teach Grades 2nd – 8th can apply to this 10 day teacher institute, June 2nd – 12th, 2010 at the University of Oklahoma.
Selected participants will receive NASA funding that covers the cost of: ten nights lodging, meals for eleven days, morning and afternoon refreshment breaks, handout materials, curriculum notebooks, “mini ground school”, orientation flight in University owned aircraft, flight materials and logbook, and model rocket projects. There will be a $250 stipend to all participants!!!
The Application deadline has been extended past the date originally posted and applications are now due in the Oklahoma NASA Space Grant Office at the University of Oklahoma no later than 5PM on January 20, 2010. All applications will be reviewed on a competitive basis. For further information please contact Stephanie Ponder via email or call 405.325.6559.
Download the Workshop flier here.
Download the Application form here.
December 3rd, 2009 Bob
Dr. Clyde Snow, the well-known forensic anthropoligist (and OU Professor) will be the guest speaker at a public lecture at Science Museum Oklahoma in Oklahoma City on Thursday, December 10th, at 7:00PM. The lectured will be free and open to the public.
Dr. Snow is a well known U.S. forensic anthropologist. Some of his skeletal confirmations include John F. Kennedy, victims of John Wayne Gacy, King Tutankhamun, victims of the Oklahoma City bombing, and Dr. Josef Mengele.
Snow attended Eastern New Mexico University to earn his Bachelor’s Degree. His master’s degree in Zoology was then earned at Texas Technical University. Finally he attended University of Arizona and achieved his Ph.D. in Anthropology.
In 1968, Snow became the head of the department of Forensic Anthropology at Civil Aeromedical Institute. By 1972, the American Academy of Forensic Sciences recognized forensic work as a specialty of anthropology.
Since 1979, Snow turned his focus to forensics exclusively. He worked with various human rights groups and brought to attention mass graves of civilians in Argentina, and spent five years training many of the founding members of the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team (Equipo Argentino de Antropología Forense, EAAF). So far at least five officers in Argentina were convicted partially due to Snow’s work in the mass graves. The success of this mission led to the creation of Guatemalan Forensic Anthropology Team as well when survivors of the Guatemalan Civil War sought his help in 1991.
In 1991, Snow traveled to San Vicente, Bolivia, to carry out a search for the remains of the American outlaws Butch Cassidy and theSundance Kid. However the exact location of the grave was unknown at least to within some yards, and the grave excavated transpired to contain the remains of a German miner named Gustav Zimmer. Alas no remains were found whose DNA matched that of Parker and Longabaugh’s families.
In 1997, Snow worked on mass graves found in the territory of the former Yugoslavia. Snow also participated in a re-enactment of an excavation of Butch Masters in Illinois that aired on The Discovery Channel episode Science Detectives on Discover Magazine.
In 2004, Snow appeared on the Unsolved History documentary television series episode Hunting Nazis on The Discovery Channel.
December 2nd, 2009 Bob
Join The Oklahoma Conservation Commission, the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation and the Arcadia Conservation Education Area for a one-day workshop to learn skills and methods for incorporating these weird, wacky, water critters into your conservation education efforts. Come prepared for both indoor and outdoor settings.
Materials: Participants will receive A Guide to Common Freshwater Invertebrates of North
America and QuickGuide to Major Groups of Freshwater Invertebrates by J.
Reese Voshell, Jr. and much more!
Date: Thursday, January 21, 2010
Location: Arcadia Conservation Education Area, near Edmond, Oklahoma
Time: 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
(Teachers receive 7 hours of professional development credit)
Cost: $10 (Lunch and materials included)
Enrollment is limited to 25 participants. Registrations will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. (Registration form is here)
REGISTRATION DEADLINE: Friday, January 8, 2010
December 1st, 2009 Bob
Habitat Box Workshops
Tundra & Rainforest – Sat, Jan 9, 2 – 3 pm
Desert & Wetlands – Sat, Feb 20, 2 – 3 pm
Grasslands & Forest Sat, Mar 6, 2 – 3 pm
Create one of our most popular teacher resources – habitat boxes! At this make & take workshop you’ll create your set of classroom ready habitat boxes. Boxes will include classroom ready curriculum too. (Limit – one set of habitat boxes per teacher.) Cost per person: $20 / teacher
Enroll on-line or by phone: (405) 425-0218
Go to http://www.zoofieldtrips.com/teacher-workshops for more information.
Teresa Randall, CIG, CIT, CIHT
Director of Educational Programs
OKC Zoo & Botanical Gardens
2101 NE 50th
OKC, OK 73111
(405) 425-0288 FAX: (405) 425-0243