ARLINGTON, Va., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning, announced that science educators from all over the region will convene in Kansas City, MO for its first regional Conference on Science Education in 2010. Held in conjunction with the Science Teachers of Missouri (STOM) and the Kansas Association of Teachers of Science (KATS), the three-day conference will feature hundreds of workshops, presentations and seminars on a variety of topics, aimed at engaging science educators of all levels in the latest and most innovative teaching methods and new developments in science. The conference will be held at the Kansas City Convention Center and other local venues.
At this crucial time for science educators this conference comes at a pivotal moment. With the recent reports detailing the decline in science education this gathering to discuss, strategize and showcase the best research and technology in science education takes on greater significance. Reports such as the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) or the National Academy of Sciences report Expanding Underrepresented Minority Participation and the revision of 2005 report Rising Above the Gathering Storm, all outline concrete ideas for improving the quality of science education. Initiatives like Change the Equation and U Teach look to address ways to bring together public and private stakeholders to implement best practices. This conference is an opportunity to hear from administrators, supervisors, policy makers and teachers themselves on the reports and many efforts to improve science education.
In addition, attendees have the opportunity to participate in a variety of professional development activities, and participate in a number of thought-provoking presentations from nationally-renowned speakers in science and education. The keynote speaker for the conference is Dr. Jeff Goldstein, director of the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE) and overseer of the Voyage National Program. Dr. Goldstein will be speaking on how science education fosters an understanding of the world around us in a very emotional way. Teachers as well as administrators will be empowered to take the insights back to their classrooms to inspire their students. His presentation takes place on Thursday, October 28 at 9:00 a.m. in the Kansas City Convention Center.
Dr. Goldstein is known in Kansas City for his role in creating the Voyage Model Solar System, a one to 10-billion scale model of the Solar System. The fifteen stanchion exhibit is a fusion of science and sculpture designed to provide the community with an understanding of the Earth's place in the Solar System and the Sun's place among the stars. He will be giving tours of the installation on Thursday, October 28 from 1:30 pm-4:00 pm along Baltimore Avenue from the Power & Light Building to the historic Union Station.
Other dynamic speakers include Kenneth Wesson, an educational expert on neuroscience. Wesson's presentation, which will be held on October 29 at 11 a.m., will focus on advances in neuroscience that will encourage educators to reassess their beliefs on classroom learning and create environments that are more conducive to how the brain actually processes information. Lisa Freeman, professor of biology and vice-president for Research and Graduate Studies at Northern Illinois University, DeKalb will be presenting on Thursday, October 28 at 2 pm on strategies for creating, implementing and sustaining science education partnerships. Educational consultant Aminata Umoja, an educator with over 30 years teaching experience in the Los Angeles Unified and Atlanta Public Schools Districts, will be presenting on Friday, October 29 at 9:30 a.m. on how to effectively use data to improve science teaching and learning. Umoja will demonstrate how this strategy will contribute to short-term and long-term success in the classroom.
The Exhibition of Science and Teaching Materials is an essential destination for attendees. Over 150 of the leading science education companies and organizations in the world will be featured in the exhibit hall. Companies that provide integrated learning and teaching systems for a variety of science topics will have displays and conduct workshops demonstrating their products and services. One such company is CPO science. They will conduct a workshop to demonstrate a car and ramp kit that teaches the concepts of force and motion. Also featured are local companies and organizations like the Midwest Energy Efficient Schools Program. This company visits schools and teaches elementary students about energy efficiency and provides take-home kits. Explore the NSTA Exhibit Hall for all of the new and exciting science teaching and learning technologies, supplies and supports.
On Saturday, October 30 from 8:30-11 a.m., NSTA, WGBH and Kansas City Public Television (KCPT) are hosting a free community science event for elementary teachers, parents, school officials and community members. At the Science Matters Community Event participants will engage in exciting hands-on activities, live animal presentations and learn about NSTA's newest initiative, Science Matters, a public awareness campaign designed to rekindle a national sense of urgency and action among schools and families about the importance of science education. The Science Matters Community Event will be held in the exhibition hall.
The NSTA Kansas City Area Conference on Science Education begins on Thursday, October 28, at 8: 00 a.m. and will conclude at noon on Saturday, October 30. Teachers interested in attending the conference can register online at http://www.nsta.org/conferences.
The Arlington, VA-based National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), www.nsta.org, is the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all. NSTA's current membership includes approximately 60,000 science teachers, science supervisors, administrators, scientists, business and industry representatives, and others involved in science education.
SOURCE National Science Teachers Association