NJSTA shares regional science education and professional development opportunities to support science teaching and learning throughout New Jersey.  Check out the Events page for our calendar of NJSTA and regional events. Do you want to see your information highlighted as news article or in our newsletter? Please scroll down to find out how!

  • 4 Jan 2020 8:43 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    The American Modeling Teachers Association will offer distance learning Modeling courses for the 2020 spring. The distance learning courses are synchronous sessions, 3 hours each, using the Zoom platform with video and break-out sessions. The leaders will dive deep into the Modeling pedagogy and use simulations and videos if labs cannot be conducted in participants’ own time.

    ·        Intro to Modeling, a 15 week course hosted on Tuesday evenings 7-10 pm EST, starting January 14, 2020:

    o   For details and registration

    ·        Advanced Topics for Middle School Modeling, a 5-week course hosted on Wednesday evenings from 7-10 pm EST, starting January 15, 2020:

    o   For details and registration

    ·        Electricity & Magnetism Modeling course, a 15 week course hosted on Thursday evenings from 7-10 pm EST , starting January 16, 2020:

    o   For details and registration

    Our Modeling Workshop Hosts and Leaders already have many summer workshops planned. The workshops can be searched by location and by content areaWe have Modeling Workshops in Physics (mechanics, waves, E&M, Computational Modeling Physics 1st), Chemistry (1st and 2nd semester), Biology (1st and 2nd semester), Middle School and Physical Science.

    The Modeling Instruction pedagogy works very nicely with the Next Generation Science Standards, to see how well, check out the diagrams: https://www.modelinginstruction.org/connections-to-ngss-and-21st-century-skills/ And recently, we shared the podcast series with our members; if you want to listen to what David Hestenes, Brenda Royce, Colleen Megowan-Romanowicz and Larry Dukerich have to share, visit the Science Modeling Talks:  https://sciencemodelingtalks.com/

    AMTA logo 2018 small.png

  • 4 Jan 2020 7:08 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    First Lady Tammy Murphy has contacted NJEA regarding her interest with climate change and education .  NJEA is  reaching out and asking  if there any NJSTA members who would be willing to share what they have done in their classrooms in this area.    Have you done lessons on climate change in your classroom? Lessons can be in any content area (science, language arts, math, arts, social studies, languages, technology, etc) and at any grade level.

    Please share your experiences by emailing
    Shannon Pellegrino, SPellegrino@njea.org by January 15th

  • 4 Jan 2020 5:38 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    Drought conditions have primed many regions for unusually high and intense fire activity.

        * Thick Smoke Blankets Southeastern Australia (Image from Jan 1, 2020; Posted Jan 2, 2020)

        * Seeing the Parts for the Whole (Image from Dec 16, 2019; Posted Dec 18, 2019)

    Fire activity in the Amazon and much of South America often coincides with a dry season from July through October.

        * Tracking Amazon Deforestation from Above (Posted Dec 19, 2019)

    -- SEVERE STORMS (1 updated event, 1 new image) --

    Early winter brought unusually heavy and widespread snow to much of the United States and parts of Canada.

        * Southern California Snow (Image from Dec 28, 2019; Posted Dec 31, 2019)

    -- DROUGHT (1 updated event, 1 new image) --

    Parts of Africa have been plagued by dry seasons growing hotter and rainy seasons arriving later and with less water for crops and livestock.

        * Water Levels Keep Falling at Lake Kariba (Image from Nov 25, 2018; Posted Dec 30, 2019)

    Natural Hazards is a service of NASA Earth Observatory.
    https://naturalhazards.nasa.gov/    https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/

  • 15 Dec 2019 7:39 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    The Education Development Center research team is looking for teachers who can help pilot test 3 blended learning curriculum modules (on polymorphism, trophic cascades, and population divergence). These modules were created as part of a National Science Foundation-funded project on teaching and learning with authentic ‘big’ data. Teachers receive a $200 donation for each module, as an incentive and a thank you.  

    Brief overview of the study: 

    What:  Pilot Test one, two, or all three of the teaching modules  

    When:  Anytime between Dec 1st and March 1st that fits with your curriculum

    How Long: Each blended learning mini-unit takes approximately 3-4 classroom sessions

    What You’ll Do:  Attend a webinar about the modules, preview and teach one, fill out a questionnaire about your experience and/or be interviewed by a researcher; maybe have a researcher observe your class.

    What You’ll Get: A $200 donation for each module you try out.

    For more information, please email zisci@edc.org 

    Twitter: edctweets| Facebook: EDC| web: edc.org

  • 15 Dec 2019 7:30 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)
    Teachers, your holiday gift came early this year!

    We are excited to announce that registration for the Thomas Edison Pitch Contest 2020 is NOW OPEN! This is the first year we are opening our registration for early birds who want to get a head start on their projects.

    If your team registers by December 31st, you will receive your Maker's Kit weeks earlier than other teams AND a Thomas Edison goodie bag with fun memorabilia and educational resources! 

    You can click here to learn more about how to register now!

    About 10 years ago, the Edison Innovation Foundation created this contest to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship among students in grade 4-12. Our fun STEM contest will allow your students to create their own inventions to solve problems that they see in the world today by providing STEM supplies for FREE, hands-on experience, and state-of-the-art STEM prizes for your school. Learn more about the contest here.

    We invite all students & teachers, whether your school has never done something like this before or you have received your fair share of Maker's Kits in the past, to join us in celebrating 10 years of bright ideas!
    Get Your Maker's Kit Early!

  • 29 Nov 2019 9:28 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    Intro to Modeling: What are conceptual models?  What is modeling?  What is Modeling Instruction - what is it like for teachers?  For students?  How does it work?  Why does it work?  What does it have to do with NGSS? This distance learning course will take on these questions and more in a 15-week distance learning format that meets once weekly, three hours per meeting.  We will delve into the cognitive underpinnings of Modeling Theory - reading about some of the seminal theories upon which it is based, engage in Modeling discourse and practice discourse management, watch videos of Modeling classrooms and make sense of student thinking by watching them whiteboard and listening to them talk with each other. We will look at how Modeling uncovers the spectrum of middle and high school science topics, exploring the storylines from the various disciplines, discussing the fundamental models of each of these disciplines with expert Modelers from physics, chemistry, biology, and middle school science. The course will be led by Janelle Hollingshead,  Ariel Serkin, Tanea Hilber and Nathan HaradaFor details and registration

    Middle School Modeling Advanced Topics is a 5-week distance learning course for teachers who have already taken any Modeling workshop, thus bringing together a group of participants who are familiar with the pedagogy and have experience implementing it in the classroom.  The course will address how to  support teachers continuing to implement Modeling in their own classrooms.  Main topics will include incorporating student-to-student discourse, assessing students’ conceptual learning, and leading engaging lessons that build models through storylines.  This course will show how Modeling is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards and 3-Dimensional Learning.  Participants will also be given the opportunity to incorporate claim, evidence, reasoning into their science teaching repertoire.  Finally, the course will focus on giving participants a more in-depth understanding of the middle school Modeling resources and provide assistance “Modelize-ing” their own activities. The course will be led by George Nelson and David Bates. For details and registration

    This Spring on Thursdays from 7-10 PM (EST), AMTA will offer a 45-hour Distance Learning Electricity & Magnetism Modeling Course.  It will run for 15 consecutive weeks, meeting for 3 hours per week for synchronous communications, and will require at least three additional hours per week for individual and virtual group work.  The course will develop content knowledge and pedagogy for teaching a high school electricity and magnetism course from a microscopic Modeling perspective.  This course will require you to bring your Modeling "A" game each week! This is an excellent opportunity for any Modeler who is looking to deepen their content understanding and extend their understanding and experience in Modeling. The course will be led by Holly McTernan, Jess Dykes and Donna Blakeney. For details and registration

  • 29 Nov 2019 8:57 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    PAEMST logo Nominate a deserving K-6 mathematics or science teacher within your district to win $10,000.

    Anyone – including principals, teachers, parents, students, business leaders or members of the general public – may nominate exceptional mathematics or science teachers who are currently teaching grades K-6 for the 2019-20 award year.

    Teachers may also apply directly on the PAEMST website.



  • 8 Nov 2019 6:34 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    Applications are now being accepted for the 2020 class of National STEM Scholars, a program designed specifically for middle school teachers inspiring the next generation of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) pioneers nationwide. Please forward! The deadline is February 1st.

    National Stem Cell Foundation Logo


    The National Stem Cell Foundation (NSCF) partners with the Carol Martin Gatton Academy of Science and Mathematics at Western Kentucky University (WKU) to fund 10 scholarships each year for middle school science teachers working to transfer a passion for science to students in this age group. Research shows that students who get excited about STEM subjects in middle school are the ones who will take those courses in high school and major in them at the college level. 


    National STEM Scholars receive advanced education in the development of STEM projects for classroom implementation, spend a full day with a national thought leader in STEM education (the 2018 speaker was Dr. Eric Mazur of Harvard University,  the 2019 speaker was Dr. John Medina – author of Brain Rules) and build a national network of colleagues for information sharing.


    Scholars are selected based solely on the merit of questions answered in the application. The selection committee is not provided with names or locations of teacher applicants.


    Over 40 Scholars have graduated from the National STEM Scholar Program. Each scholarship recipient receives the following:

    • Advanced education and leadership training on the campus of WKU from May 31 - June 6, 2020. All expenses – travel, lodging, meals – are included
    • A notebook/tablet (Chromebook or similar) to facilitate ongoing collaboration
    • A credit of up to $1,500 for technology and supplies to implement a classroom Challenge Project
    • Sponsored attendance at the National Science Teacher Association (NSTA) Conference in March/April, 2021. All expenses – registration, travel, lodging, meals – are included
    • Year-long mentorship and support provided by Gatton Academy faculty

    Applications are open now – click here to apply. The deadline is February 1, 2020.


    Click here to learn more about the National Stem Cell Foundation. Please contact me if you have questions or would like more information.

  • 3 Nov 2019 9:52 AM | NJSTA (Administrator)

    Letting Learners Take the Lead: 3 Ways to Foster Problem Solving in Your Classroom

    By Annie Whitehouse, 10/31/19 11:30 AM 

    Solving food scarcity. Preventing viral outbreaks. Designing buildings to withstand natural disasters. Through Engineering Adventures and Engineering Everywhere, learners across the country have proposed unique, data-driven solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems. These flexible curricula were tested in afterschool and summer programs, but classroom educators across the country have been implementing them into their STEM instruction for years. Just ask Camie Walker, the Utah educator who was featured on our blog in 2016 for her incredible work with the Engineering Adventures unit Shake Things Up: Engineering Earthquake-Resistant Buildings. She chose units from EiE’s flexible curricula because she loves creating opportunities for learners to connect what they’re learning to the world around them and to follow their STEM interests and passions.

    We sat down with Walker to learn how she uses flexible curricula to foster an inquiry-based, globally focused culture in her classroom that leads to plenty of real-world connections, and even the chance to perform with a Mythbuster!


  • 29 Oct 2019 9:44 PM | NJSTA (Administrator)


    We are excited to introduce PhysicsQuest 2019 and announce our latest featured physicist, Chien-Shiung Wu!

    Register now for a free kit with everything you need to complete four amazing experiments in your classroom. Each kit includes a Teacher’s Guide, materials, and background information about a featured physicist.

    [Register Now

    On this year’s quest, students will discover Dr. Chien-Shiung Wu’s important contributions to physics, and complete four experiments to learn about:

    • Thermal energy and equilibrium, using hot and cold water

    • Exothermic and endothermic reactions, using steel wool and vinegar

    • Thermal insulating properties, using thermal paper

    • Freezing and melting points, using ice, salt, and sugar

    Please note: PhysicsQuest kits are limited in quantity and available on a first-come, first-served basis. You will be notified by email if you will receive a kit, or if you will be added to the waitlist and contacted next year. 


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