News 2020-21

  • 14 Dec 2020 9:15 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    OpenSciEd Teacher Workshop Series. 
    This is a 5-part series; each topic will be offered twice.

    For information about visit OpenSciEd

    Topic: Fostering Productive Classroom Norms
    Dates: January 27, 2021, or February 3, 2021
    Description: During this session, educators will gain deeper insight into the characteristics of effective classroom norms as exemplified by OpenSciEd’s Classroom Norms. Participants will explore the importance of classroom norms as the foundation for a productive learning environment for their students.

    Topic: Leading an Anchoring Phenomenon Routine
    Dates: February 24, 2021, or March 3, 2021
    Description: During this session, educators will gain more in-depth insight into the use of an anchoring phenomenon as a component of effective science instruction as exemplified by OpenSciEd’s Anchoring Phenomenon Routine. Participants will explore the importance of science phenomena as the catalyst for science teaching and learning.

    Topic: Facilitating the OpenSciEd Navigation Routine
    Dates: March 24, 2021, or March 31, 2021
    Description: During this session, educators will gain a deeper understanding of practices that encourage more effective student sense-making, as exemplified by OpenSciEd’s Navigation Routine. Participants will discuss what a classroom looks like when student understanding is central.

    Topic: Supporting Student Discourse in Science
    Dates: April 21, 2021, or April 28, 2021
    Description: During this session, educators will gain a deeper understanding of the benefits and characteristics of effective student discourse as exemplified by OpenSciEd’s 3 Discussion Types. Participants will focus on the importance of student discourse in sense-making and explore discussion strategies.

    Topic: Planning for OpenSciEd Implementation
    Dates: May 19, 2021, or May 26, 2021
    Description: During this session, educators will consider how to prepare for implementing OpenSciEd in their classrooms. Participants will receive a comprehensive overview of OpenSciEd’s design specifications to inform their planning.

    Register HERE

  • 14 Dec 2020 9:09 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    AGI Offers Award for K-8 Earth Science Teaching

    The American Geosciences Institute (AGI) invites science educators to enter its upcoming award competition, the 2021 Edward C. Roy Jr. Award for Excellence in K-8 Earth Science Teaching.

    Given annually, this award is presented to one teacher of students ranging from kindergarten through grade eight in the United States or Key stages 1-3 in the United Kingdom. The award recognizes leadership and innovation in Earth science education.

    Entrants are asked to submit an application packet including a curriculum vitae or resume, letters of recommendation, an essay, and an exemplary Earth system science lesson plan, preferably that they have implemented in their instruction. Submissions are stronger if they address current trends in Earth science education, which this year may include ways that the teacher has effectively adapted instruction to address pandemic conditions, though this is not required.

    The winner of the Roy Award will receive a monetary prize of $2,500 and a travel grant of up to $1,000 to attend the upcoming National Science Teaching Association National Conference in Chicago, April 8-11, 2021. To be eligible, applications must be submitted by January 20, 2021.

    The award is given in honor of Dr. Edward C. Roy Jr., a strong and dedicated supporter of Earth science education. For more information on requirements, application procedures, and deadlines, please visit and/or view a brief webcast at Questions may be directed to

    About AGI
    The American Geosciences Institute (AGI), a federation of scientific and professional associations representing over a quarter-million geoscientists, is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to serving the geoscience community and addressing the needs of society. AGI headquarters are in Alexandria, Virginia.

    AGI Contact:
    Geoff Camphire, Communications

  • 14 Dec 2020 9:06 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    Nobel Breakthroughs

    Wednesday, December 16
    9:00 a.m. PST | Noon EST

    On October 6, 2020, UCLA Professor Andrea Ghez won a Nobel Prize in Physics for her discovery of a supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy. The next day, UC Berkeley Professor Jennifer Doudna won a Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the development of CRISPR-Cas9, a powerful genome editing breakthrough that allows scientists to rewrite DNA in any organism, including human cells. UCLA Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Emily A. Carter, a distinguished scientist and member of the National Academy of Sciences, welcomes the two Nobel laureates to discuss the science behind their discoveries, their current research, how they achieved world-class research results and the significance of their Nobel Prizes for women and youth who have a passion for science.

    Closed captioning will be available in English and Spanish.


    Those who RSVP will receive a confirmation email with a link to tune in.

    To watch past conversations, please visit

    For inquiries:

  • 14 Dec 2020 8:45 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    On Feb. 18, NASA will attempt to land a new rover on the surface of Mars. We invite students of all ages, educators, parents, campers, museums and other institutions to participate in the adventure of this historic landing. NASA has created a STEM Education Toolkit with links to the “Mission to Mars Student Challenge” to lead students in designing their own Mars mission, plus activities, lessons, interactives, social media and more to allow classrooms, families, and individuals to ride along. In addition, there will be a series of programs broadcast for educators and students in the days and weeks leading up to landing. As always, we welcome this opportunity to include diverse learners in the NASA family.

    Here are some of the particulars:

    • Named Perseverance and carrying a helicopter named Ingenuity, this car-sized rover is designed to search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect samples of Mars for return to Earth.
    • Landing events will be broadcast live on February 18 starting at about 11:00 AM PST/2:00 PM EST in English and Spanish with touchdown at about 12:55 PM PST/3:55 PM EST.  Watch live.
    • Your one-stop shop for extensive Perseverance education and public engagement materials and resources is the #CountdownToMars Mars 2020 STEM Toolkit.
    • Learn all about the “Mission to Mars Student Challenge” launching in January. The challenge culminates on Feb. 18, when students can land their missions along with the Perseverance Mars rover! Participants will also have the opportunity to join live stream Q&As with NASA experts and submit student work and questions for the landing day broadcast.
    • Find the schedule for televised educational events in advance of landing day at the Challenge and Toolkit sites and at Mars Watch Online.
    • Would you like a preview? Perseverance will be following much the same path as the Curiosity rover did in 2012. Watch Curiosity’s “Seven Minutes of Terror!” video.

  • 21 Nov 2020 11:57 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    We are excited to invite New Jersey to select two graduating high school seniors to attend the 2021 National Youth Science Camp (NYSCamp). 

    Traditionally, the NYSCamp ( has been a residential STEM program designed to honor and challenge some of the nation’s rising STEM leaders and provide them with opportunities to engage with STEM professionals and participate in exciting outdoor activities. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, however, the National Youth Science Foundation (NYSF) cancelled the in-residence portion of the 2020 camp and instead hosted an entirely virtual NYSCamp experience for 2020 delegates ( Due to ongoing concerns about the pandemic, and taking into account the safety of our 2021 delegates, the Board of Trustees of the NYSF has elected to again cancel the in-residence portion of the 2021 NYSCamp and host a second virtual camp experience. The 2021 Camp will run from Monday June 28 to Wednesday July 21. Even with the virtual nature of the camp, delegates are expected to participate daily in camp activities for the entire duration of camp. The NYSCamp is offered to selected participants at NO COST so that talented students may attend regardless of their financial ability. 

    Please share this website with applicants:

    For more information, please visit our web sites at and

  • 11 Nov 2020 4:51 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)

     Panasonic Eco Logo.png

    FREE Resources available for Virtual or In-Classroom Teaching

    Register now for SPRING! 


    Students will:  
    1. Define environmental issues
    2. Create actions to help solve the issue
    3. Apply actions in their community to help solve the problem
    4. Evaluate actions conducted and share the results  

    5. Submit their final results into the  Eco Diary Competition for prizes!  


    • Open to 5TH- 8TH grade teachers  
    • Aligned to National Literacy Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, ISTE Standards and NJ Climate Change Guidelines  
    • Available for virtual or in-classroom teaching 
    • Available in editable PDF format on the website at or you can request hard copies of the resources 


    • Sign up by going to the registration page HERE
    • Welcome box to be mailed to home or school after registering! 

     *The Eco Diary Challenge deadline date is May 6, 2021, but you must register now to participate! 

    Prizes will be awarded by Panasonic to the top 3 best teams (and their teachers) from across NJ


     Questions? Contact Kim at: or (718) 483-4262 

  • 11 Oct 2020 10:41 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    This virtual event, streamed free on 10.10.2020, is the Global Launch of Countdown, a new initiative to accelerate solutions to the climate crisis. Watch five curated sessions packed with more than 50 speakers, activists, actors and musicians, who share actionable and science-backed ideas, paired with moments of wonder, inspiration and optimism. Presented by TED and Future Stewards. Learn how you can take action on climate change and join the race to a zero-carbon world: #JoinTheCountdown





    Countdown Global Launch agenda and speaker list:

    Session 1: Urgency (19:35) Hosted by Mark Ruffalo and Don Cheadle Featuring: Johan Rockström, Angel Hsu, António Guterres, Prince Royce, David Lammy and Christiana Figueres

    Session 2: Leadership (1:28:58) Hosted by Al Gore and Jaden Smith Featuring: Severn Cullis-Suzuki, Ursula von der Leyen, Olafur Eliasson, Rebecca Henderson, Elif Shafak, Jesper Brodin, Pia Heidenmark Cook, Dave Clark, Kara Hurst, Aparna Nancherla, Carlos Moreno, Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr and Yemi Alade

    Session 3: Transformation (2:38:42) Hosted by Jane Fonda and Xiye Bastida Featuring: Varun Sivaram, Myles Allen, Rose M. Mutiso, Raye Zaragoza, Monica Araya, Al Gore, Gloria Kasang Bulus, Nana Firman, Ximena Loría, Tim Guinee, Stephen Wilkes and Yemi Alade

    Session 4: Breakthroughs (3:47:37) Hosted by Prajakta Koli and Hannah Stocking Featuring: Thomas Crowther, Ernestine Leikeki Sevidzem, Brent Loken, John Doerr, Hal Harvey, Sigrid, Karen Scrivener, Tom Schuler, Rahwa Ghirmatzion, Zelalem Adefris and Prince William

    Session 5: Action (4:55:37) Hosted by Priyanka Chopra Jonas and Chris Hemsworth Featuring: Amanda Gorman, Roman Krznaric, Sophie Howe, Miao Wang, Alok Sharma, Nigel Topping, Lisa Jackson, Liz Ogbu, Ava DuVernay, His Holiness Pope Francis, Andri Snær Magnason, Cynthia Erivo and Gary Motley

    We're dedicated to making Countdown as impactful as possible. Share your feedback here:

  • 4 Oct 2020 6:46 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    Image preview#NJSTEMTogether Communities Challenge: this is a team-based high school student communities challenge where students are asked to identify issues affecting their communities as a result of COVID-19 and to provide their solutions to these issues. 

    Registration launched on September 25.

    NJSTEMTogether Communities Challenge Flyer-5.pdf

    “I CAN STEM” Diversity and Inclusion Campaign

    Through “I CAN STEM,” the NJSPN aims to support an increase in the diversity of New Jersey’s STEM workforce and academic pipelines. “I CAN STEM” (logo attached) will highlight diverse STEM role models so that all students will be able to see themselves participating and succeeding in STEM courses and careers. 

    “I CAN STEM” will recognize both historical and famous STEM figures, as well as New Jersey STEM professionals who will be selected via a nomination process. To nominate an “I CAN STEM” Inductee, click here.

  • 27 Sep 2020 10:31 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)
    This summer three high school teachers worked with faculty from the Rutgers Protein Data Bank to develop a curriculum unit that focuses on the pandemic. Its entitled "COVID-19 in Molecular Detail" and targets students in grades 9 -14.

    Its completely online and free. The units are downloadable and teachers can request 'teacher only' resources and answer keys by emailing Dr. Shuchismita Dutta, Ph. D. at or shuchi.dutta@rcsb.orgBelow are a few more details about the new curricular module - “COVID-19 in Molecular Detail” - that can be accessed on the on PDB-101 Website:

    ·      What is it?

    o   It is a free online resource that explores the molecular biology of SARS-CoV-2 focusing on the sequence, structure and function of key proteins in the viral life cycle.

    ·      Who is it for?

    o   The lessons and activities target grades 9 through 14 students.

    ·      Where to find it?


    ·      Who developed it? And When?

    o   The Research Collaboratory for Structural Bioinformatics Protein Data Bank (RCSB PDB) at Rutgers University hosted the curriculum development in Summer 2020, as a collaborative effort between Rutgers University scientists, educators and a few NJ high school teachers.

    ·      Why should you check it out?

    o   Topics in the curriculum range from molecular discussions about hand washing, the viral life cycle, the viral evolution, key enzymes and proteins, infection, viral genome expression, disease, testing, treatment, and vaccines.   

    o   Answer keys and Teaching notes are available to teachers with a free teacher login.

    Watch one of the developers describe the curricular contents in the video at

    Have specific questions about the curriculum? Email Shuchismita Dutta at

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